Update: CopperheadOS for Android

As longtime readers here know, I’ve never been a fan of Google’s mobile device collection platform known as Android. I have, however, been a fan of a few niche variants of Android that attempt to excise Google’s collection capabilities from the OS itself. One of those OSs is the very security-focused CopperheadOS. Continue reading “Update: CopperheadOS for Android”

Redundant Secure Messengers

I have previously written about the desirability of having multiple secure messaging systems.  On the text/IM front I have covered Signal, Silent Circle, Wickr, Wire, and Threema.  For voice communication I have talked about Signal and Silent Phone Wire.  Email options I have covered include ProtonMail, Tutanota, and old-fashioned PGPContinue reading “Redundant Secure Messengers”

Wire Private Messenger

Wire Private Messenger is my new favorite encrypted messaging service. It is rapidly replacing Signal in my day-to-day use, though it will be a long time before it replaces Signal entirely. There are a lot of things to recommend this relative newcomer. Continue reading “Wire Private Messenger”

ProtonMail Two-Factor and Single Password Mode

Two days ago, ProtonMail released version 3.6. A number of new features were added in this release. The biggest one is long-awaited: two-factor authentication. Another new feature that interested me is ProtonMail’s new single password mode. Continue reading “ProtonMail Two-Factor and Single Password Mode”

PrivNote Self-Destructing Messages

I recently found a service that I enjoy using.  It is called PrivNote and it allows you to transmit small bits of encrypted text via a URL.  Here is how it works.  First navigate to https://privnote.com.  The very simple interface offers you a compose pane and prompts you to “Write your note here…”  You enter your message and click “Create Note”.  Your note is encrypted and you are given a URL that you can share with the intended recipient.  Privnote does not transmit the link for you – it is your responsibility to copy it and paste it into an email, text message, etc.  Once you have sent the note the real fun begins. Continue reading “PrivNote Self-Destructing Messages”

My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 5: Use Cases

At this point, my ultra-private iPod phone is setup and ready to use.  If you choose to follow a similar course, it is important to define how you will actually employ the device before you start to use it.  This will also dictate the tradecraft you should undertake to support your use case.  As I see it, there are essentially two ways this device can be used. Both will make you more private and secure.  It is up to you to decide how far you need – or want – to take it.

Continue reading “My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 5: Use Cases”

My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 4

At this point in the process, the iPod has been initally setup, and the settings modified to make it as organically secure as possible.  At this point it is necessary to fund the iTunes account.  Even if you only plan to use free applications, the account must be funded before you can download apps.  The smallest denomination gift card you can purchase is $10 (I was unable to find anything below $15).

Continue reading “My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 4”

My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 3

Yesterday’s post covered the initial device setup for my Private iPod Phone.  Today’s post will go through the settings that impact privacy and security.  The goal of these settings is to make the device as inherently hardened as possible.  These changes are designed to lower the footprint of the iPod by limiting the amount of information it transmits, making it less trackable, and generally less “noisy”.  These are all important factors to me when creating my ultra-private iPod phone.  Many of these settings can also be applied to your iPhone. Continue reading “My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 3”

My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 2

Welcome back to Part 2 of my attempt to create a private and secure iPod phone!  When I started this series I thought it would consist of three parts: procurement, setup, and use.  Setup took far more time than I expected, however, so I am going to cover this stage of the process somewhat more slowly.  One of the reasons I wanted to do this experiment was to see what roadblocks I might run into.  True to form, I ran into a couple of problems right off the bat.  This post will cover setting up the iPod phone intially, and modifying basic settings for privacy and security.

Continue reading “My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 2”

My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 1

Some time ago I read an amazingly good article on using an iPod Touch as a secure/private phone.  I love the idea, and I have thought about it for quite a while.  An iPod Touch is remarkably similar to an iPhone, but potentially far more private and secure.  Recently I decided to try it for myself and see how easy (or hard) it would be to set up.  I also had unanswered questions about its actual use.  Part 1 of this article will cover device procurement and the lengths I went to for anonymity’s sake.  Part 2, 3, and 4 will cover setup, and Part 5 will cover actually using my new, ultra-secure and private iPod phone. Continue reading “My Ultra-Private iPod Phone 1”