Tor Spiders

(five minute hack-and-tell version)

Travis Hoppe

The darknet

sounds scary!

The darknet is anything you can't traditionally "see" on the Internet.
If you can type it into your browser, it's probably not on the darknet.


Can be.

Since it's a "back-alley" of the Internet you'll find all sorts
of shady characters (ex. Silk Road, pornography, political dissidents).


Key feature of the darknet. Your IP isn't linked to you anymore.

Tor (The Onion Router)

... is implemented by encryption in the application layer of a communication protocol stack, nested like the layers of an onion. Tor encrypts the data, including the destination IP address, multiple times and sends it through a virtual circuit comprising successive, randomly selected Tor relays. Each relay decrypts a layer of encryption to reveal only the next relay in the circuit in order to pass the remaining encrypted data on to it. The final relay decrypts the innermost layer of encryption and sends the original data to its destination without revealing, or even knowing, the source IP address.

(hypothetically) Let's say you've been IP banned

making too many requests to LinkedIn's frontpage.

funny story...

Use Tor to create a fake identify to connect and continue browsing.
Python module stem does all the heavy lifting.

Can we do better?

Tor Spiders
pip install git+git://

Uses python's threading module (I know, not multiprocessing!) to create simultaneous Tor connections to spider a queue of urls.


from tor_spiders import tor_request_pool

T = tor_request_pool(2)
url = ''
for x in range(10):

for r in T:
    print r.text



What can you do with it?


Silently spider a website without leaving trace to your real location.

Access control

Circumvent IP range blocks
(sometimes locations are mapped to same IP address)

Censorship detection

Download a website and see if the country of origin changes it.

Thanks you!

I'm looking for a hardware hacker for a martial arts project.
Got skills? Let's talk! travis.hoppe @