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Added on: February 17th, 2020 by Afsal Meerankutty 2 Comments

Secure Internet Live Chat Protocol (SILC)

The Secure Internet Live Conferencing (SILC) protocol is a new generation chat protocol which provides full featured conferencing services, just like any other contemporary chat protocol provides. In addition, it provides security by encrypting and authenticating the messages in the network. The security has been the primary goal of the SILC protocol and the protocol has been designed from the day one security in mind. All packets and messages travelling in the SILC Network are always encrypted and authenticated. The network topology is also different from for example IRC network. The SILC network topology attempts to be more powerful and scalable than the IRC network. The basic purpose of the SILC protocol is to provide secure conferencing services. The SILC Protocol have been developed as Open Source project. The protocol specifications are freely available and they have been submitted to the IETF. The very first implementations of the protocol are also already available.

SILC provides security services that any other conferencing protocol does not offer today. The most popular conferencing service, IRC, is entirely insecure. If you need secure place to talk to some person or to group of people over the Internet, IRC or any other conferencing service, for that matter, cannot be used. Anyone can see the messages and their contents in the IRC network. And the most worse case, some is able to change the contents of the messages. Also, all the authentication data, such as, passwords are sent plaintext in IRC.

SILC is much more than just about `encrypting the traffic’. That is easy enough to do with IRC and SSL hybrids, but even then the entire network cannot be secured, only part of it. SILC provides security services, such as sending private messages entirely secure; no one can see the message except you and the real receiver of the message. SILC also provides same functionality for channels; no one except those clients joined to the channel may see the messages destined to the channel. Communication between client and server is also secured with session keys and all commands, authentication data (such as passwords etc.) and other traffic is entirely secured. The entire network, and all parts of it, is secured. We are not aware of any other conferencing protocol providing same features at the present time.

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