Secure file sharing using private groups

I know the primary goal of IPFS is to create a global cloud network, in which every internet user can easily and conveniently share files with any other user. On the other side, there are cases where groups need to share private data securely within their own circles: This is typically true for governments and state institutions, most corporations, research groups, universities, and so many more. As I’m eager to see IPFS gain early adoption, I would like to know if and how it plans to address sharing content within a private group.

I’m imagining a feature among the following lines: An IPFS node can be configured to operate as part of a group rather than publicly, where groups can be protected by a password which any node would need to enter in order to connect to it. When configured to be part of a group, the node only communicates with IPFS nodes which are also part of that group, nothing else. Only IPFS nodes that have entered the group name and password correctly can send and receive data with nodes who are also part of that group.

Just to be clear: I’m well aware this doesn’t stop a member of a group from configuring their IPFS node in a way that transmits the group’s private files to the public. People using this feature would be responsible to make sure they have no leakers in their network, and if they don’t it’s fully their responsibility.

Does such a system already exist, or is it planned? Would you find it useful if it was? Do you believe it will be beneficial to IPFS by also making it more practical for private groups as a secure sharing tool?

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hello,

i know this application can permit to share file in IPFS on nodejs : https://github.com/MichaelMure/Arbore

http://arbo.re/

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That looks like an interesting project, nice work. Thanks for letting us know!

Hey, author here.

Arbore is somewhat close to a launch state. The way things are shared is a bit different than what you describe (it’s more like email and less like dropbox) but I think the usecases you mention are covered. Feel free to join https://gitter.im/Arbore/Lobby, any help is appreciated. There is tons of way to make it better !

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I’m curious if it’s a fork of IPFS, or a program that just works on top of it. In any case it’s a great idea to have something similar yet different in terms of functionality, providing further coverage which may encourage more people to adopt the standard.

It’s a JS app that spawn a standard go-ipfs daemon. Eventually, it might make sense to swith to js-ipfs but there is missing feature for now.

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There is also an experimental option to set up a private network of peers who have a shared secret key.

More: https://github.com/ipfs/go-ipfs/blob/master/docs/experimental-features.md#private-networks

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