Although widely used, currently popular peer-to-peer (P2P) applications are limited by a lack of user privacy. By design, services like BitTorrent and Gnutella share data with anyone that asks for it, allowing a third-party to systematically monitor8 user behavior. As a result, P2P networks can only be safely used by those comfortable with wholly public knowledge of their activity.

OneSwarm is a new P2P data sharing application we’re building to provide users with explicit control over their privacy by enabling fine-grained control over how data is shared. Instead of sharing data indiscriminately, data shared with OneSwarm can be made public, it can be shared with friends, shared with some friends but not others, and so forth. We call this friend-to-friend (F2F) data sharing.