$10,000 Challenge for Unblockable, Anonymous, Encrypted Mobile Internet Access

Posted by KatrinVerclas on Jun 30, 2009

Nova Spivack, a serial entrepreneir and CEO of twine.com, just issued a small $10,000 challenge for an "unblockable connection to the Internet":

From the challenge description:

Must work on mobile devices that are widely used in Asia (China in particular, but also Myanamar) and the Middle East (Iran for example). These are regions where State-sponsored Internet blocking is rampant.

Must be possible to download and install by a non-technical device owner using a simple one-click install, with an optional settings step and optional advanced settings.

A particular desired, but not required, feature of this solution is that it should be possible to hide and/or quickly delete all signs of this application in an emergency. If a person is arrested and their mobile device is confiscated, any evidence of such a connection should be hidden or deleted easily. The best solution for this would be a dead-man's switch such that if the application is not given permission regularly (using some kind of key code perhaps) then it removes itself from the device. This would have to happen without the process of confirmation and removal being visible to a third-party operating the device. The goal of this feature is to protect the device owner if they are in custody or their device is confiscated. In an ideal world the application could reset the device, deleting everything, if it does not receive confirmation repeatedly (after a few missed confirmation deadlines). The dead man's switch should be optional and set on or off with a configuration step.

Ideally the winning solution will work on an optimal mobile device platform for the desired region(s) (Asia and the Middle East). Ideally it will be open source and freely available as well, to maximize the spread and adoption of the technology. These are not required features of the winning solution, but are desired and will count towards a final decision.

A discussion about this challenge is on twine here.

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd><p><br> <b><i><blockquote>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options