What kind of email services are you using and recommend and why?

34 replies [Last post]
Punchy
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Joined: 06/17/2015

Hello,
I am somewhat curious as to what kind of email services some of you Trisquel users are using, especially webmail services? I'm considering switching from using Google Gmail (which I've used for many years now) to something that is far more privacy and freedom respecting...
Thank you

tomlukeywood
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Joined: 12/05/2014

i personally use Fastmail as they have a good privacy policy

but there’s still the problem that all my emails are stored on fastmails servers so i can never rely know(unless i buy the company..) if they sell my emails or give them to surveillance agency’s

so the best option is to run your own email server
the only reason why i haven’t done this yet(and i hope too soon) is i haven’t found the time yet.

if you don’t know how to set up a mail server there was recently a post on this forum about it(and you can always ask on this fourm):
https://trisquel.info/en/forum/how-create-mail-server

and also its a very good idea privacy wise to encrypt your emails:
this page has some info on encrypting emails:
https://emailselfdefense.fsf.org/en/

and even if your using gmail if you encrypt your messages well then google should not be-able to read them
although i think they would still know who your sending the email too

Jabjabs
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Joined: 07/05/2014

I too also use Fastmail and while I don't think that they directly give out the information I would guess that it eventually gets caught up in the NSA's Prism program as the company is based in Melbourne, Australia (Home town yay!) but the servers are in New York, US. :(

onetechbuddy
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Joined: 05/26/2014

I use openmailbox.org. I liked the interface and the fact that it is recommended by FSF.
The bigger reason - it is gratis and I don't have much to shed from my pockets.

Screenshot from 2015-07-09 06:56:20.png
Punchy
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Joined: 06/17/2015

I'm curious... where did you see or hear that Openmail was recommended by the FSF? I did a Google search but didn't come up with anything..
Thank you

onpon4
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Joined: 05/30/2012
ssdclickofdeath
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Joined: 05/18/2013

EDIT: I didn't notice that an answer was already posted because I didn't refresh the page for an hour or so. >-D

It's recommended on this page:
https://www.fsf.org/resources/webmail-systems

tdlnx

I am a member!

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Joined: 04/09/2014

I like openmailbox.org as well. I've never had any problems with their services.

SuperTramp83

I am a translator!

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Joined: 10/31/2014

I use riseup. I recommend riseup and https://ruggedinbox.com/

ruggedinbox is great for many reasons and it's a better option (IMHO) than openmailbox.

martinh
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Joined: 02/21/2014

I think SuperTramp83 is right in recommending "ruggedinbox", as its servers are hosted "off-shore"
and are therefore outside of EU or mostly other legislation.
Sadly, all companies, ISP's, or any one hosting emails has to comply to lawful regulations,
which state that all "electronic communications" must be stored/archived (currently it's 6 months in the EU and 2 years in the US & UK).
Furthermore compliance regulations require the archiving of "electronic communications" which consist of not only email, but may include instant messaging, file attachments and SMS text messages, VoIP and other electronic messaging communications used.

Legimet
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Joined: 12/10/2013

Bulgaria is in the EU :(
Clearly, the best choice is to host your own email and use GPG encryption.

lloydsmart

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Joined: 12/22/2012

This is definitely the way to go.

Even if you can't use GPG because others refuse to use it due to laziness, at least host your own server. It's a start!

Check out https://mailinabox.email

Henpei
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Joined: 08/11/2015

Actually the directive was declared void in april 2014 because it was considered that it breaking EU's basic rights. Now with that said, most countries still have the laws put in place and will probably be happy to utilize it.

EDIT: I would link to the page for it but the EU webbpage is down atm. XD

EDIT2: Site is up now:

"On those grounds, the Court (Grand Chamber) hereby rules:

Directive 2006/24/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 15 March 2006 on the retention of data generated or processed in connection with the provision of publicly available electronic communications services or of public communications networks and amending Directive 2002/58/EC is invalid."

http://curia.europa.eu/juris/document/document.jsf;jsessionid=9ea7d2dc30d54fc3dee5df274ecfb44a9b717b2a2b01.e34KaxiLc3qMb40Rch0SaxuOch90?text=&docid=150642&pageIndex=0&docla...

tomlukeywood
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Joined: 12/05/2014

"6 months in the EU and 2 years in the US & UK"
weird i though the uk was in the eu...?

Legimet
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Joined: 12/10/2013

It is.
But maybe UK has a stronger requirement than the rest of EU?

martinh
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Joined: 02/21/2014

Yep, the UK is the only Country in the EU that rushed through a law to extend it to 2 years.

But I basically agree that you'll have to host your own email, or if not use encryption.

Problem with encrypting emails is that most recipients won't be bothered to do it,
hence won't be able or willing to read the email you've sent them.
(Try making an appointment by sending an encrypted email ? Good Luck !)

SuperTramp83

I am a translator!

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Joined: 10/31/2014

first time I send or reply to an email I always sign it. That way I make it clear that I prefer using encryption. If it is only one time or two times generic, boring, impersonal mail communication, I don't care too much, but if it is personal and private I insist that the recipient installs enigmail and teach them in 5 mins how to sign/encrypt/decrypt the mail.
Most are lazy, but if you insist and they are friends, they will learn and use it.

ruggedinbox is great, because it uses libre software and doesn't require JS to signup or login and use the webmail service. It doesn't ask for an email account when you signup. It has a tor hidden service, works great. Bulgaria is certainly better than France (openmailbox. openmailbox also requires js for signup/login and it uses a google js for the captcha).

Jodiendo
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Joined: 01/09/2013

Supertramp said:
reply to an email I always sign it

Liar!

You never signed my email! you just signed my soiled e-mail toilet paper once and that was it....

Dreamcoat
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Joined: 06/26/2015

Hey all!

I thought you might be interested in this article by Benjamin Mako Hill regarding the topic at hand.

Google Has Most of My Email Because It Has All of Yours: http://mako.cc/copyrighteous/google-has-most-of-my-email-because-it-has-all-of-yours

I use posteo which is fully LibreJS compliant.
https://posteo.de/en

Here is the FSF's take on email clients: https://www.fsf.org/resources/webmail-systems

I also use riseup b/c I have been with them for a long time though I am not sure where they are on the libre/free software side of things. https://help.riseup.net/

Hope this helps!

Punchy
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Joined: 06/17/2015

After doing some research on my own, I learned that SquirrelMail and RoundCube were both web-based email services that ran under the GNU General Public License. However, after looking over this website, http://thesimplecomputer.info/free-webmail-for-better-privacy#openmailbox I became under the impression that they are nothing more than an interface for other web-based email services. This has me confused.
When I went to look at both their respective website homepages and then even checked Wikipedia for clarification, it just confused me even further. I'm not very technically inclined when it comes to webmail services.
RoundCube's wikipedia entry says it "is a web-based IMAP email client."
SquirrelMail's wikipedia entry says it "is a project that provides both a web-based email client and a proxy server for the IMAP protocol."
This goes against the above website saying they are both an interface for other webmail and email services. I'm not sure exactly what to think now.... :-(

BCG
BCG
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Joined: 07/07/2015

SquirrelMail and RoundCube are just web applications that act as clients to an email server... no different than Eudora or Thunderbird or Outlook, except that they run on a web server. To use a postal analogy, this is the "Mailbox".

In order to actually send and receive mail, a mail service (server) is required to which the client can connect. This server handles the sending/receiving/storage of the messages. To continue the postal analogy, this would be the "Post Office".

An email service may use a web based client such as RoundCube to provide users with a way to access their mailbox over the web... however in that case RoundCube itself is not the email service (server) it is just the interface for accessing your messages. In your cited example, "OpenMailBox" would be the email service with respect the question in the OP.

moxalt
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Joined: 06/19/2015

Essentially, there are two parts to your interaction with the e-mail system:
your mail client and your mail server. The mail client (in your case
Google's proprietary webmail interface) is the program you use to receive, read,
and send e-mails. The mail server (in your case Google's mail server(s))
provided by whatever mail service you use is where e-mails from thousands of
different clients are stored, processed, and sent on to other servers to be
retrieved by clients.

There are two types of clients: offline clients and webmail clients. Offline
clients (such as MS Outlook, Claws Mail, Evolution, etc.) are standalone
programs which download messages from the mail server of your choice for you to
read, and can also send messages to said server to be passed on. An online
webmail client (such as the Gmail interface, RoundCube, or SquirrelMail) are
mail clients hosted by the providers of mail services and accessible through a
web browser.

Most of the big corporate mail providers have their own proprietary webmail
clients for their own services, like the Gmail interface I assume you use.
RoundCube, SquirrelMail, Horde, and others are libre webmail interfaces. Many
of the smaller mail providers use them (such as Openmailbox, Ruggedinbox,
Riseup.net, etc.).

Anyway, recommendations. I would have to recommend Riseup, which I am a proud
user of. They offer POP, IMAP, and SMTP over TLS and SSL. You can retrieve and
send e-mails either through RoundCube or an offline client of your choice. They
offer 90 megabytes of online storage space for e-mails by default (though I
reduced mine to make space for others because I use an offline client anyway)
and the service is free of charge (though I would seriously encourage you to
donate- they survive solely on donations).

You can't just register for an account though- you have to apply. This is
basically a political test, because the service is really supposed to be for
facilitating activist communication and mailing lists. Though they warn of
potentially waiting weeks for a reply, they underestimate themselves- I got my
response the day after I sent in my application.

On the client front- I recommend Claws Mail. It's fast, light, packs
powerhouse functionality, has a nice interface, and is available in the
Trisquel repository.

Sim
Sim
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Joined: 09/29/2013

I use https://mailbox.org/en
Mailbox.org offers A+ Grade SSL Encryption and a jabber server. In addition, it is ad-free and the servers are located in germany.

Mozart92
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Joined: 07/11/2015

Anyone knows Protonmail?

https://protonmail.ch/

I'm not much of an expert but I've read this has been created in order to fight mass surveilance.

cooloutac
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Joined: 06/27/2015

If you send any mail to anyone in the US or EU they can get your emails, especially with their prism like technology which collects everything going on the lines, every country in europe has this, including germany. Still best to use something like pgp/gpg encryption.

But even then, hypothetically speaking, if you become the most interesting man in the world, the NSA can crack either of them possibly with supercomputers or backdoors(we know their own computers can crack ssl and rsa), and even if everyone you know was using full disk encryption, they might be able to crack some of those too with cold boots.

lembas
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Joined: 05/13/2010

Certainly if you're the public enemy number one, you are fucked.

But that's way beside the point which is protecting the general public against unwarranted constant surveillance, panopticon style. We can't and on the other hand don't have to make things impossible but just painful enough to stop this current total information awareness bullshit.

Every little bit helps and we should come up with solutions to get people off facebook and google.

cooloutac
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Joined: 06/27/2015

I agree.

tonlee
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Joined: 09/08/2014
Geshmy
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Joined: 04/23/2015

I started using hushmail before I found Trisquel and this forum. I paid for a years subscription but they were providing a web based only (uses javascript) account for free. It's Canadian, they say email is stored in encrypted form and my Evolution setup is using OpenPGP. It took me a long time to figure out how to use OpenPGP or enigmail. I wonder if there is a way to certify if my email really is encrypted.

I wasn't really worried about governmental mass surveillance but I would like my ISP to mind its own business. I'm not sure that email services outside of US or EU law zones don't carry other risks. I mean what is the law in Russia for instance, and does Putin prevent Russian hackers or even the NSA for that matter running supposedly secure email services?

I like the post and will spend some more time looking up all your recommendations.

arescorpio
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Joined: 06/10/2010

Nice :http://www.prxbx.com/email/

SuperTramp83

I am a translator!

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Joined: 10/31/2014

There are certainly better options than the French openmailbox.. but if you encrypt all the mails and all the mails that you receive are encrypted too it doesn't really matter the provider.

tonlee
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Joined: 09/08/2014

With openmailbox can you send alias emails from an email client?

Magic Banana

I am a member!

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Joined: 07/24/2010

You can. Look at the "Protocols" section on https://www.openmailbox.org for the configuration.

suitsmeveryfine
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Joined: 08/15/2014

There is a third way to set up user-controlled e-mail – through a democratic association.

I'm at the board of Fripost, a democratic, non-profit organization based in Gothenburg, Sweden. We provide an e-mail solution (we don't like to call it a service) for ourselves, the members, and we follow strict democratic procedures; board meetings are open to the public, we publish the minutes online, etc. We also use only free software to run and administrate the servers and recommend only free software in our propaganda.

Technical details: we use IMAP and members can access their e-mails either though his/her own client or via a web interface (Roundcube).

Sadly, all companies, ISP's, or any one hosting emails has to comply to lawful regulations,
which state that all "electronic communications" must be stored/archived (currently it's 6 months in the EU and 2 years in the US & UK).

Not exactly. Sweden has implemented the Data Retention Directive, but fortunately it doesn't apply to non-profits and thus we are not obliged to store any data. Since the association was founded we have also never been approached by the authorities.

Our "service" is not gratis but costs 200 SEK (roughly 22 euros or US dollars) per year – a small price for freedom.

Please check out our latest talk from FSCONS last month.