Tor Welcomes Shari Steele as Its New Executive Director

Tor has been around for about ten years now, and while the project was received with warmth by numerous users who wanted to maintain their anonymity online, several courts and governments have been trying to dismantle it for quite some time now. In order to evolve and make its goals known to a wider audience, Tor had to make some changes, and after a long five-month search, the people in charge have decided to hire a new executive director named Shari Steele. One of the reasons why Tor is not incredibly successful right now is that the project has nobody to educate people about the importance of privacy and anonymity online. Steel could be an ideal candidate for this, as she served as the executive director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation for 15 years.

During that time, the EFF has grown from a small lawyer team to a widely appreciated team of attorneys that were a part of numerous high-profile lawsuits in the digital world. The director and co-founder of Tor, Roger Dingledine, said that Tor could also become a vocal advocate of privacy in the future, which could definitely help with its popularity.

“Tor is part of a larger family of civil liberties organizations, and this move makes it clear that Tor is a main figure in that family.At our core we’re a technology organization, and the best thing we do for the world is we write tools like the Tor Browser and make sure they can keep people safe. But we’re also really interested in the impact of our tools…. One of the things that I’m really looking forward to over the next couple of months is working together among all the Tor people to get a consensus on what we want to be and what our priorities should be. But I’m expecting the core of that to [still] be technology.”

However, Steel seems to believe that Tor should focus mostly on creating encryption tools.

“My inclination is that Tor is going to remain strictly tools, but that we are going to be the experts on encryption and that may very well mean we’ll get called into talk about encryption, in whatever [role] that might mean.I don’t see Tor as becoming like EFF, but it’s a recognition that Tor is an essential part of that infrastructure. Internet freedom can’t happen without it or without EFF.”