Replace Your Email

January 2019

Most Americans use “free email services" that record and analyze every email that they send or receive. Even those Americans who have an alternative email service do not encrypt their emails, which means that anyone can intercept and read them. Here are some email systems that are designed to not spy on you and which encrypt your email.

 

My View: Protonmail is the Best Email Alternative

Protonmail 

According to Forbes magazine, Protonmail is “The only email system the NSA [National Security Agency] can’t access” since it is encrypted from end-to-end. This means that even Protonmail can read your email messages.

Also, when you sign up, they require no personal information from you so that they do not know who you are. In addition, Protonmail keeps no IP logs that can be linked to your email account. Thus even a court order directed at Protonmail can reveal nothing about you or the content of your emails. Protonmail is incorporated in Switzerland and all of its servers are located there. User data are protected by Swiss privacy laws.

Protonmail is so secure that, if you lose your password, you’ll never be able to see your emails or access your account again.

Protonmail was originally developed by a group of scientists working for CERN (The European Organization of Nuclear Research), the world’s largest particle research laboratory, which is why it is called Protonmail. Currently, Protonmail has over a million users worldwide.

There is one major drawback to using Protonmail. Most of the people who receive your emails, or who send emails to you, do not have encrypted email programs. Thus your emails to them, as well as their emails to you, will continue to be monitored, recorded, and analyzed by Big Tech. It is only when you communicate with someone who uses Protonmail, or some other encrypted email service, that your emails will be kept private.

It should be noted that Protonmail does allow you to send encrypted messages to someone who does not have an encrypted account. They receive an email message that an encrypted email from you can be read on a secure website, which they are then able to access if you have already set them up with a secured password to that site.

The basic Protonmail account is free. The email service makes money by offering paid accounts at various levels of service, including accounts for businesses and other organizations. The free account is limited to 150 messages per day, a maximum of three folders to hold those messages, and 500 MB of email storage. Paid accounts currently start at five dollars per month.

For its free version, Protonmail allows only web access to your email. You cannot set up an email client on your personal computer to receive or send emails. Even for paid accounts, Protonmail has no POP3 support, although IMAP and SMTP are supported through its paid services.

You can also access Protonmail through their Apple IPhone app and a Google Android app.

Protonmail is open source, which means that the code that runs the email system is open to public inspection and public audit.

 

Another Encrypted Email Service: Tutanota

Tutanota

The name Tutanota combines two Latin words. “Tuta” means “secure or protected” while “nota” means “message or note.”

Tutanota is an encrypted email service that is nearly identical to Protonmail, although it does differ in some of the details.  Its free account has twice the storage space as Protonmail’s. Also, Tuntanota is based in Germany and is subject to German privacy laws, which are not as strict as Swiss privacy laws. It is also widely believed that German intelligences services, as well as other allied intelligence services, have access to this system.

Other than these considerations, Tutanota is very much like Protonmail.  

 

Your Desktop Email Client

If you download your email to your computer in order to view it, rather than viewing it online, you are using a desktop email client. And the most-used, free email clients are Big Tech spying machines. What you need is a free, open source email client.

 

My View: Thunderbird is the Best Desktop Email Client Alternative

There are versions of Thunderbird available for the Windows, Apple, and Linux operating systems. Although further development of Thunderbird has been discontinued, an active group continues to provide maintenance updates. While there are other free, open source email clients, Thunderbird is generally considered to be one of the top choices in terms of security and usability.

Two other free, open source email clients are: Mailspring and Claws Mail.