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Why email privacy matters.

Everyone uses email every day. It's time to make everyone care about email privacy as well.

2020-06-17
When email was invented decades ago, no one took privacy concerns into consideration. Email became the main tool for private and business communication. For many, email became the replacement of letters. Yet, email privacy lags far behind the privacy of a letter. While this issue was neglected at first, today everyone understands that an email is as private as a postcard. Now is the time to act upon this knowledge.

Email is not safe

While we all know that emails are not safe for confidential communication, only very few act upon this knowledge. Instead, people keep arguing that they have nothing to hide.

But, as Glenn Greenwald puts it in his famous TED Talk, this is idiotic:

Over the last 16 months, as I've debated this issue around the world, every single time somebody has said to me, "I don't really worry about invasions of privacy because I don't have anything to hide." I always say the same thing to them. I get out a pen, I write down my email address. I say, "Here's my email address. What I want you to do when you get home is email me the passwords to all of your email accounts, not just the nice, respectable work one in your name, but all of them, because I want to be able to just troll through what it is you're doing online, read what I want to read and publish whatever I find interesting. After all, if you're not a bad person, if you're doing nothing wrong, you should have nothing to hide".

Not a single person has taken Glenn Greenwald up on that offer, and for a good reason: Everyone has something to hide.

Besides, none of us can predict whether the things we say today, the opinions we share today, may be outlawed, censored or disapproved of in the future. This happened often enough already in recent history.

Privacy is a precaution

By protecting our private communication, we simply make sure that this personal data of ours can not be abused - not now, and not in the future. Making sure that our emails stay private is a necessary precaution for all of us. Everyone understands the issue at once when it comes to facial recognition. And the same is true for email.

Our mailboxes contain some of the most private information about us that is available online. One could argue that email is the gate to our online identity. So it is time to make sure no one can abuse this data.

Self-censorship in emails

The people who do understand the problem with email privacy have started to change the way they use email. One Tutanota user reported to us that he's been self-censoring what he writes in emails for years. He even self-censors what he writes and to whom he writes.

This is a pretty bad outcome when we consider that email is basically a must to take part in our modern society. You need it for any kind of online activity: For registrations, bookings, online shopping, communication. Even job applications, which contain very sensitive, private information, are usually sent via email.

Without email, life becomes very complicated; some tasks become impossible.

Email privacy isn't hard to get

The good news is: Email privacy isn't hard to get. All we need to do is use email services that we can trust and that respect our right to privacy, best with encryption built into the code. This way not even the provider can read, copy or use our private emails.

Different to many free email services, Tutanota does not track you in any way.

Encrypted email for everyone

Tutanota offers encrypted email free for everyone.

Make the switch today and take back your privacy.

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