A quotation from CEO Matthew Prince|
From the University of Chicago law
"Back in 2003, Lee Holloway and I started Project Honey Pot as an
open-source project to track online fraud and abuse. The Project
allowed anyone with a website to install a piece of code and track
hackers and spammers. We ran it as a hobby and didn't think much
about it until, in 2008, the Department of Homeland Security called
and said, 'Do you have any idea how valuable the data you have is?'
That started us thinking about how we could effectively deploy the
data from Project Honey Pot, as well as other sources, in order to
protect websites online. That turned into the initial impetus for CloudFlare."
When you fetch a page from a website that is served from CloudFlare,
also plant a cookie that brands your browser with a globally-unique ID.
We don't know if CloudFlare is tracking you. We do know that they are
perfectly positioned to immediately begin tracking web surfers who visit
selected sites hosted by CloudFlare. Is this why they proxy so many dodgy
sites? Are they trying to jack up their stats and hype their way into another
round of venture funding, or are they getting black-budget bucks from the feds?
It is clear that Homeland Security admires the
Honey Pot technique.
A better question might be this: If Homeland Security approached CloudFlare
with checkbook in hand, would CloudFlare take the money and keep quiet?
Prince gave a presentation in 2005 at a conference in Vienna. And even today,
LinkedIn brags of his "substantial work with government and law enforcement."