Google’s cyber unit Jigsaw introduces Intra, a new security app dedicated to busting censorship

Jigsaw, the division owned by Google Alphabet, has revealed Intra, a new application designed to protect users from state-sponsored censorship.

Intra is a new application that aims to avoid DNS manipulation attacks. Every time you visit a website, the easy-to-remember web address becomes a less memorable IP address, often through an insecure connection. That makes it easy for oppressive governments, such as Turkey, which has used this technique before, intercepting requests for web addresses and killing them on their way to prevent sites from loading, or redirecting them to a fake site.

By examining applications and application traffic through an encrypted connection to a trusted domain name server, Intra ensures that you can use your application without intruding or reaching the correct site without interference.

"Intra is extremely easy to use, just download the application and turn it on," Jigsaw said. "That is all".

Jigsaw has already seen some successes in parts of the world where Internet access is restricted or monitored. Apparently, the government of Venezuela used the manipulation of the DNS to prevent citizens from accessing news sites and social networks.

The application uses Google's own trusted DNS server by default, but users can also channel their browsing requests through Cloudflare which also hosts its own secure DNS server public access, or any other secure DNS server.

Admittedly, it requires some confidence for Google and Cloudflare – or any third party. A spokesperson for Jigsaw told TechCrunch that Google's Intra use of DNS is covered by its privacy policy, and Cloudflare also has its own.

Jigsaw said it will integrate the application into Android Pie, which already allows encrypted DNS connections. But Jigsaw also makes the application available to users in parts of the world with weaker economies that make upgrading from older devices almost impossible so they can benefit from security features.

It's the last piece in the security and privacy puzzle that Jigsaw is trying to solve.

The little-known alphabet division focuses on preventing censorship, threats of online harassment and combating violent extremism. The incubator focuses on enhancing freedom of expression and expression by providing tools and services that make the network safer for higher risk objectives.

Jigsaw also invested his time in several other applications against censorship, such as Project Shield, which protects sites against distribution. denial of service attacks, as well as the scheme, which provides journalists and activists with a virtual private network that channels data through a secure channel.

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