Adeona is designed to use the Open Source OpenDHT distributed storage service to store location updates sent by a small software client installed on an owner’s laptop. The client continually monitors the current location of the laptop, gathering information (such as IP addresses and local network topology) that can be used to identify its current location. The client then uses strong cryptographic mechanisms to not only encrypt the location data, but also ensure that the ciphertexts stored within OpenDHT are anonymous and unlinkable. At the same time, it is easy for an owner to retrieve location information.
Once you lose your computer you’ll be able to call up the Adeona Recovery application, give it the file you stashed away in a safe place, and it will try to remotely fetch pertinent information from your stolen computer. The information you’ll be able to retrieve includes:
- Internal IP address: This is your Internet location as reported by the operating system.
- External IP address: This is your Internet location obtained by asking a web server like checkip.dyndns.org.
- Nearby routers: These are network routers obtained by doing a traceroute to randomly selected PlanetLab computers. Usually, the names of network routers you are using can give a clue about your geographical location.
- Access point: This is the name of the wireless hotspot you are connected to, can also give a clue about your location. Note that the Windows version simply reads a registry key that might contain stale information or no information on the current access point (for example, if one is not using the Windows-provided wireless management tools.)
- Photos (Macs only): The location-finding component takes a picture using isightcapture before sending an update to OpenDHT. If a thief was using the laptop, you could get a photo of them.
More info: Adeona