I got some questions where to go after leaving Gmail to send real secure and private emails. If you decode my public key then you will see I use an email hosted in the U.S. That’s not really secure because the NSA can get access to this emails and I can’t do anything against it. I also use an Email in the I2P darknet: http://www.i2p2.de ← That’s really secure but the end to end encryption is only inside the I2P network. Most email servers outside I2P in the real Internet refuse emails form I2P – guess why 😦
So the best secure thing is to install your own email server based on open source software at home and use it.
The second best way for beginners is to use an email in Iceland. In Iceland after the Wikileaks scandal and the change of the government, you will get the best privacy in this world. As far as I know there is no secret service in Island like the NSA. They only have a normal police, which is doing the counterintelligence. They only take a look inside your emails if you do criminal thing, which are criminal after law in Island. So whistleblowing will be allowed.
You can use 1984 which is a web company in Island with an English web interface for emails: https://1984hosting.com
Another one is OrangeWebsite, where you can pay with bitcoins: http://www.orangewebsite.com
If you have more suggestions, please let me know in the comments 🙂
Proprietary Software can include back doors – see Skype and Microsoft.
Proprietary formats can include metadata. This is data, which you can’t see but it can lead to your identity. They caught a Greek anonymous activist, because he uploaded a word document with his real name in the metadata.
If you are no computer expert don’t upload anything else then plain TXT files to the Internet. You can use copy and past as well to post it in web services. Even graphic formats like JPEG or TIFF can include data like GPS coordinates, the used camera, user and software name.
It’s very difficult for beginners to find this metadata. So if you are a good designer like the poor Greek one, send your PDF files to a computer expert. He can clean the metadata before the upload.
These programms can show you the metadata:
PDF – BeCyPDFMetaEdit
Viewer for many formats: http://regex.info/exif.cgi
The metadata can be useful to locate the author of a document in real life, if you have questions for example. Open source programs like Libre Office uses metadata too. The trick is not to fill in your real name during installation and don’t use your real name for login.
You can use a Linux live system (like TAILS) to produce anonymous documents.