I come across many time a term called ”hostile environment” in cryptographic literature. What does “hostile” mean exactly?

Is it unknown third parties which are responsible for handling and routing our data?

Suppose that we create a connection from node A to node B. Does hostile imply that packets could traverse to untrusted machines C, D, and E in between?

Is it related to physical tampering of devices?

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    $\begingroup$ Can you please edit your question to link to occurrences of the term in the papers? $\endgroup$ – SEJPM Jan 1 '19 at 15:49
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    $\begingroup$ I'm not sure why you added the visual-cryptography tag to your question, but the content of your question doesn't seem to have anything to do with it. Could you please either edit your question to explain how it relates to visual cryptography, or remove the tag? $\endgroup$ – Ilmari Karonen Jan 1 '19 at 19:49
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    $\begingroup$ I think that a hostile environment commonly refers to an environment where attacks may happen. As hostile is a strong word which often implies some kind of action, I would assume that these attacks include active attacks such as man-in-the middle attacks (by machines C, D and E) or physical tampering. However, I do also think that the term "hostile environment" is very generic; it depends on context what is meant exactly. So I won't answer and agree with the comments here to request more detail and close the question until it is provided. $\endgroup$ – Maarten Bodewes Jan 4 '19 at 8:45