The MASQ Network is a one-of-a-kind mesh network - designed to act in a superior manner to ALL VPN services. Utilizing decentralized pathways, MASQ provides privacy and uncensored content on the internet and has none of the weaknesses inherent with traditional VPN and Tor Protocols.
Where to start?! - the possibilities are truly vast, but some major impacts on the forefront would be:
The MASQ Network, once live, will grow to a point where it cannot be shutdown. No large entity or Government could censor the network from allowing users to access the freedom of the entire Internet.
Allowing all Internet users to access content that other regions have - for example a user in China would be able to access Google, YouTube, news media outlets and more.
Allows users to use the features of the MASQ Network without being easily detected by oppressive regimes (which is a common issue with VPNs and Tor)
Provide an uncensored platform for journalists to be able to communicate and send/receive content.
Provide a foundational network layer for other dapps and communication protocols to be built as an ecosystem.
A mesh network is a local network topology in which individual computers connect directly, dynamically and non-hierarchically to many other computers or "nodes". These nodes cooperate with one another to efficiently route data to/from clients. (Wikipedia)
In context, when you use the MASQ Network, you connect with 4-5 others and route traffic between yourselves dynamically to complete each others data requests. Unlike VPNs, which connect to only one other node on the network.
The unique qualities of the MASQ Network provide value for many types of users. Some of these are:
Users who want to gain privacy features and request content online that they cannot visit due to geo-restriction.
Users who reside in a generally unrestricted region, but want to support internet freedom and fight censorship.
Users who want to earn passive income from running a Node and collecting crypto by routing traffic to other Nodes.
In a simple sense, MASQ Network uses 'hops' - the passing of encrypted data anonymously from one user to another - to route a user's data requests through several other nodes, which allows the data to remain private along the route from the user to the end server, and also allows access to content that other Nodes can retrieve in their region.
Your data is encrypted, as such, only the final destination knows what the request is. All Nodes passing on your data cannot see what is inside. This provides maximum privacy while hiding the origin and destination from all the routing nodes.
MASQ Network currently operates above the level of a VPN, without many of the weaknesses seen today.
Unlike traditional VPN services, MASQ software is NOT an end-to-end client-to-server solution where you are simply connected to one other user. Since it operates as a mesh network, a user is connected to many Nodes securely, and this allows more privacy and access to more worldwide content.
Also, users can use MASQ without a subscription, and can just pay with the MASQ utility token as they browse with their MASQ software active.
The main difference with Tor is data used on the Tor network is identifiable as being from Tor nodes, therefore isn't exactly hidden from any watchdogs or malicious parties. Further, exit nodes for Tor are on a public list. Some regions and ISPs block these nodes so users are not able to get their data requests using the Tor network
MASQ software is designed for anyone to securely serve data to other users if they wish. This earns MASQ cryptocurrency. MASQ is the crypto fuel for the MASQ Network and is an ERC20 utility token currently on Ethereum.
The MASQ token also secures the MASQ Network by acting as a monetization model - users serving content to other Nodes earn MASQ tokens, and users using the network
Currently the modelling is based on fixed rates of MASQ per packet and byte of data. In the future free market dynamics will be added where users can choose their min and max rates for serving and consuming data.
Yes, there is an open source codebase where the software has been used in many proof of concept tests and private testing.
Technically any group of users can run a node and provide their node ID (called a public node descriptor), and other users can connect to it.
Once there are 6 nodes or more in a network, then the routing will work with MASQ for the users connected.
Since the codebase is open source the best place to check this is on the MASQ GitHub
Like most common HTTP traffic from your web browser, your ISP will only be able to detect normal data traffic going to other IP addresses on the MASQ Network. This is similar to how your traffic would go to a VPN server, but often ISPs can search those VPN servers online and conclude you are using those services. Since MASQ Network is a network of pseudo-anonymous users, there is no connection to anything unusual.
Your data is encrypted and routed elsewhere in the network, thus your data request is not visible or open to interception in any way which could reveal where your request is going.
Each user in the MASQ Network is part of a subset of connected Nodes that called a Neighborhood. Each Neighborhood is responsible for keeping track of other Nodes in the network, their reputation, and if they have active connections to one another.
The neighborhood groups of nodes also provide layers of abstraction, so any one user is only aware of up to 5 other users in their neighborhood.
While MASQ software itself is able to be compiled on almost any Operating System, it is currently supported by the team on MacOS, Linux and Windows. Future supported platforms will be released, and if you are a developer who wants to test and compile on other systems, please contact the team so you can actively contribute to development.