I use encryption whenever possible when I’m online. This includes (but is not limited to) encrypted e-mail using GnuPG, Signal messaging app, Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (https) and VPN.
What you must never forget
No matter which encryption system you use, you should never forget that meta data can and will be collected about you. If you send an encrypted e-mail then probably only you and your friend can read the contents of the email itself. Nevertheless, information about when and to whom you sent the message will be collected both by ISP:s along the route between you and your friend and by one or more governmental agencies.
If your device, like your computer, is compromised then it doesn’t matter how much encryption you add when being online. To keep your communication as secure as possible, never forget to keep your devices, including routers etc, up to date!
The GNU Privacy Guard, GnuPG, is an implementation of the OpenPGP standard as defined by RFC4880. Some find it a bit hard to encrypt e-mail’s using GnuPG but using Mozilla Thunderbird e-mail client with the Enigmail add-on makes it more or less seamless.
If you just started to use GnuPG, feel free to send me an e-mail using my public GnuPG key. Shouldn’t I mention my e-mail address? No, it’s clearly mentioned in my GnuPG key.
The Signal Messenger app is probably the most secure communication app for your smartphone. It is available for Android, iPhone, Linux, macOS and Windows.
Whenever possible, ensure you use SSL/TLS encryption when visiting web sites!
There are several reasons why we strongly recommend you to always use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) service.First of all it makes it harder for sites you visit to detect your exact location. Another reason is to prevent your ISP to log what sites you visit. This is extremely important if you connect using an open and public network.
You should chose VPN service with care. It is not so wise to just search for the phrase “best vpn” as most of the VPN providers offers affiliate programs giving sites a huge incentive to say “best in test” based on what kick-back the provider offers.
We have been using Mullvad for several years now and are very happy with their service. Based on what we heard from friends with much more knowledge in the subject than we have, Mullvad offers a very high secure service. This is confirmed by thatoneprivacysite.net.