Matthew

Does The Best Secure Email Really Exist?

In case you are not in raptures when corporations persistently feed you with targeted advertising and 'bad guys' gain access to your private data, probably you need to replace your email service to more secure analogue with reliable encryption.
Back in 2013, we found out that our governments are watching us. Intelligence services monitor our traffic and create digital profiles of our network habits. Unfortunately, they are not the only ones interested in our data. Hackers and cyber criminals also do not mind intercepting our personal info. In addition, even email services also track your messages and contacts to show targeted ads.
Isn't that frightening and annoying? It's high time to find the best secure email!
What does secure email presuppose?
  • Tamper resistance
  • That's the requirement that no 3rd parties will be able to tamper your messages.
  • Confidentiality
That's the requirement that your personal data won't be collected and stored and your messages won't be viewed by anyone except you and the
receiver.
Only two criteria that a reliable email should meet and it appeared to be such a challenge to find ones that would meet them.
What are the best secure email services?
I’ve selected for you 9 the most reliable services. My choice was absolutely non-biased so you can freely use the info below to find your own mailing service.
This safe email is in the 1st place on my list, as the company already has extensive experience and has made its name providing a well-secured email for users interested in a high level of privacy - business people, politicians and so on. I think you will find it in the 1st place in many articles on the topic.
This mail applies E2EE. It means that all info is encrypted, and only the receiver with the secret decryption key can open and view the information contained.
Besides, it offers a free VPN service to resist Internet censorship, which allows you to avoid restrictions and gain access to blocked sites. ProtonMail also provides the world's first encrypted contact manager which aims to defend user data using encryption and e-signature functions.
What I liked:
  • E2EE;
  • Open-source cryptography;
  • Self-destructing messages;
  • 2FA.
uMail is a new product, on the contrary. It's a built-in part of the whole ecosystem aimed at preserving the safety and online anonymity. For now, we can enjoy its beta version.
In terms of security, it outweighs almost all email service providers:
It is a decentralised P2P network. It means that there are no central servers where your data is stored. Thus, the tamper resistance is guaranteed.
It uses the future-proof encryption methods combined with the elliptic curve cryptography. All your messages are encrypted, and only the receiver can decrypt them. Thus, privacy is provided. In addition, the registration is anonymous. There are no phone numbers and emails required. That's the additional security level.
Besides, this ecosystem is an all-in-one solution, which includes a secure browser, messenger, wallet, and own cryptocurrency, and others. It is available for Windows MacOS and Linux for free.
What I liked:
  • Decentralisation;
  • Encryption and the use of elliptic curves;
  • Anonymous registration;
  • No ads;
  • Peer-to-peer ecosystem as a bonus.
What I didn’t like:
  • It’s impossible to send messages to offline users.
It is an encrypted email put on the market by the Belgian corporation ContactOffice. It's also free of charge. Mailfence offers E2EE based on OpenPGP, which ensures that messages transferred between the user and the addressee are not viewed by strangers. You can also access the Mailfence acc using SMTP.
The service offers safe work not only with mail but also with the calendar, contacts, and file storage. Unfortunately, the source code of it is closed for inspection, so using the app, you have to believe in the slogans of the dev company, indicated on the official website.
What I liked:
  • OpenPGP;
  • Anti-spam and blacklisted users;
  • Integrated keystore;
  • 2FA;
  • No ads.
The Tutanota mail service was introduced to us 8 years ago. It uses the freemium model, i.e., the basic functionality is available for free. The name is not accidental - 'tuta nota' means 'safe message.' in Latin. The service servers are also located in Germany, which makes them subject to the strict German data protection law.
Tutanota offers a very attractive and safe service. Actually, TutaNota feature set is pretty much alike the ProtonMail features. The service uses E2EE to ensure the inability to view mail on servers. For instance, if you shoot a text to a Gmail user, Tutanota sends a link to a temporary acc where the addressee get access to the encrypted message.
What I liked:
  • Open-source project;
  • E2EE.
It is an encrypted email service from Germany. For just $ 1 a month, Posteo offers 2 gigabytes of protected email storage. It is anonymous and is guarded by 2FA.
Posteo was the 1st email which launched DANE on its servers to safeguard users from hackers who impersonate themselves or their email receivers. In other words, DANE allows you to defend you from MITM attacks.
Posteo encrypts all data sent through the service server when it is on the go but does not offer automatic E2EE. This means that any intercepted communication can be read in plain text by an attacker.
What I liked:
  • GnuPG encryption;
  • No ads;
  • Open source;
  • Calendar and notes that you can export and sync with other customers.
The service includes email together with built-in calendar, contacts, and file store. It positions itself as a reliable alternative to traditional emails.
Kolab Now is fully open-source and introduces innovative security features. Although it does not offer E2EE, Kolab Now applies perfect forward security (PFS) protocols, i.e. that the encryption keys are ephemeral - if a message is intercepted, it will be possible to view it only
with the key that was used in a particular session.
What I liked:
  • Open-source service;
  • PFS protocols;
  • CalDav, SMTP and WebDAV support.
This Swiss mail is also a popular email service that provides E2EE, which makes it impossible for hackers to view your messages. In addition, CoutnerMail has over 4000 kinds of encryption keys.
It does not collect email data on the server or hard drives. This means that attackers will not be able to track emails, so there can be no talk of data leakage. CounterMail also excludes data surveillance by the government.
What I liked:
  • Diskless Web Servers;
  • USB dongle;
  • MITM attack defense.
The historically tested reliable email service for additional anonymity: a user can register an account without entering personal information using its own Tor node chain.
It is compatible with OpenPGP. That’s a great option thanks to which you can exchange encrypted mails even with addressees who do not use Mailbox. In this case, emails will appear in a special guest inbox, and the recipient of the message will be able to reply via a one-time link.
What I liked:
  • Anonymous registration;
  • OpenPGP standard.
It is an ambiguous secure email service with quite robust security features. It offers E2EE and 2FA and, in addition, has open-source code. So a security audit can be undergone freely.
One of the interesting features offered by SCRYPTmail is the function of hiding your real mailing address from addressees. You can use a single-use email address in cases when contact details need to be provided to a person or organisation whose legality and safety of actions you are not sure about. You no longer need to register a temporary acc, which reduces the risk of misuse of your contact info.
Actually, that’s what I really like about the product. It is a full-featured and reliable service with a high level of safety and transparency that is hard (but possible) to beat.
What I liked:
  • E2EE;
  • Open-source service;
  • Possibility to hide email address.
Conclusion
Many free email services we’ve got used to either weakly protect your confidentiality, or even take steps to undermine it. Finding a reliable and encrypted service is an important step.
There are plenty of safe email services which you can use for both business communication and usual talks. They use the newest encryption methods and serve our right for privacy. I've introduced 9 best emails in terms of reliability to you. When making the final decision, you should consider the encryption method used, the registration process, the level of centralisation, the cooperation with authorities.
Keep your head on a swivel, chose your email service carefully.

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