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Is Privacy attainable?
Or is permanent, ubiquitous surveillance a foregone conclusion?
Privacy is attainable, and the Snowden leaks contain the key to keeping communications private. The NSA cannot crack 3 free programs, which leads to a “catastrophic failure” of their ability to surveil you. If you can use email, you can learn how to effectively use these 3 programs to keep your communications private.
TOR is a web browser (like Internet Explorer, Safari or Firefox) that keeps your internet activity private. It’s not without it’s weaknesses, but all by itself, TOR is a very simple and very effective tool that is one of the 3 pillars of privacy. Use TOR to perform sensitive or mundane internet activities to secure your internet privacy. TOR is free.
2. Off-the-Record (OTC)
OTC is a way to send encrypted instant messages. There are plug-ins like Pidgin that make OTC work with most existing instant messengers. If you want a way to keep text messages more secure, use OTC instead of regular text messaging. OTC is free.
PGP is encryption software that can be used to encrypt emails, text messages, and even files. There are enough versions that you can use PGP in almost any device, laptop, or cell phone. There are lots of implementations of PGP, one of the most common, GPG, is free. Check out Edward Snowden himself giving a short tutorial on it.
And you should always be using a VPN that accepts Bitcoin just for the base layer of obfuscation of your IP address. Getting to know these three privacy tools is the first step for anyone who wants to keep the NSA out of their private information. These and lots more techniques are discussed in our book How To Vanish.
TOR + OTC + PGP = NSA Fail :)
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