More government intrusion

In June, we find out that a supposed, very expensive special phone that is always encrypted, that had been dangled before unlawful acting people was engineered by the FBI.

OK, probably the NSA, and the FBI took credit, but I don’t know.

Anyway, In June 2021 the law Enforcement agencies in different countries arrested those with the phones, Police agencies listening the whole time the phones were in use.

I am actually agreeable that criminals go to jail for distributing recreational drugs. I have seen some good people ruined because they thought they could try out drugs, without consequence. Recreational drugs compromised them, messed up, and some became addicts as well.

Likewise, if I worked for a computer company doing security things, like say running an email server and a government agency brought me proof that someone’s email was being used to distribute child porn. I would want to bend some rules to help. (it would be so easy for someone to make an email account look like it was being used wrongly. Send them a few generic adverts with links. After awhile change to the links to go to child porn) I can check it out. I am such a sucker for wanting to do right)

In the realm of my personal privacy, security - I have to resolve not to trust a particular piece of hardware or software. My security can easily be compromised by an update. People supplying update can be influenced by - lies, money, threats. I make the assumption, that those who claim to act in place of government, do all those things.

If I was the NSA, I would be the one putting out a lot of websites, that offer software for security. Or create the NSA’s ability to control those who work there.

In reality, I don’t plan on breaking the law. I don’t have enough money that any criminal would specifically target me. I am very unimportant in the scheme of the world.

Now, what am I getting at.

I can create some changes in my personal habits that can make a difference, I hope.

One is to create my own email server away from my house. Pay for some server space some place.

Also, to borrow software to create my own first hop away from wherever my computer is. Like say if I am using a laptop at a hotel. I connect to the internet with my hop being to place I have a personally encrypted connection to. Verify I am there. Then use that to enter the internet, perhaps by Tor, or by going to a commercial VPN.

My problem being that I really do not know how to write that code, I am hoping to borrow packages from here or there. Like Onionize my connection to my web space, and have built a way to enter the internet from there in a variety of ways. My being anonymous, I have to create after the first hop out.

I can prevent, my ISP, or the hotel servers from acting as a man in the middle. Perhaps look through the data as it went through my private server connection, and see if it has tracers trying to get out through it.

Anyone here know how to grab off pieces of software, and put them together for this?

I end this with a story. Once I met a fellow whose career had been to utilize networks of Cameras, Like a bank to watch their lobby. Manufacturers who needed to watch people to prevent theft. And so on.

He had decided he needed to find some other way to earn a living. He said after being in the business, he felt he had seen that a constant surveillance had a bad effect on the humans beings, even when it was needed to protect them. I am not a psychologist either, but he had not acquired that opinion lightly.

Security experts would agree that not updating software is even easier to compromise (via known vulnerabilities and actively exploited vulnerabilities).


and

is mutually exclusive. Not to be an elitist here (I dont work in IT) but even IT professionals have a hard time properly managing mail servers. Us normies have no chance of a proper normal working email server. To give you an example:

Spam messages accounted for 47.3 percent of e-mail traffic in September 2020

The only reason you are not getting spam in your popular mail services is that people are paid to manage it. They have filters and blocks in place so that your inbox is as clean as it is.

With your own mail server, you are up to your own defenses. You have to manually filter out spam otherwise you’d get tired of mail notifications quickly and your server drive space will be filled up in no time. You also have to prove somehow that your IP (and IP range) is not spewing out spam. Otherwise, may not even reach your contact’s spam inbox.

Also, what about your server uptime? You wont get mail in the event you maintain your server and do system updates.

Speaking of updates, your desired security posture of not updating much is not helpful in the context of running a server. You can do this with one app with few components but an entire server is a different beast. Its simply not feasible to manually review all the code in all the things each update.

TLDR: Get a proper mail service provider. Because proper mail server management is hard.

hauntsanctuary, you bring up good points.

Security experts would agree that not updating software is even easier to compromise (via known vulnerabilities and actively exploited vulnerabilities).

My actual thought, not well expressed, is to update the main OS, but I should be concerned about third party bits of software. That is, not install those things to being with, the first being; Obviously, FaceBook, and things I can live without.

Also let me describe my intended approach to be, I expect to have a public presence on the internet, where I do normal, perhaps dumb things people do with computers.
AND
Some things to be more private, like If I am trying to work up an idea to sell to a major company for money. Takes preparation to keep my ideas secure to me. I can’t do it all it once. Right now, create the computer security environment I will need. Or maybe I do need now.

Like create my own email handler.
As you intelligently replied:

"is mutually exclusive. Not to be an elitist here (I dont work in IT) but even IT professionals have a hard time properly managing mail servers. Us normies have no chance of a proper normal working email server. To give you an example: . . . "

I intended not to use this, my own created private email address except for private projects. Registering for different things with email account leads to SPAM. Since I only have a few places, individuals I email. I hope I can live with what SPAM comes.

I had hoped to borrow code from somewhere to create the email, on a web space somewhere. I did used to code, but I am not into learning a whole language and a lot of internet protocol just for this. I had felt, some others would want to use what I am suggesting here in a similar way, A bit of code borrowing and some ones advice should carry this forward.

TLDR: Get a proper mail service provider. Because proper mail server management is hard.

Basically that sounds like good advice for some things. I used to tell a friend, when he used the email from an ISP to instead use a service that was not dependent on where he got internet. Some years later he was really upset when he realized all the things he lost. Receipts for things he bought, to get warranty service. email addresses of friends.

In my case, I have purchased a lot of ebooks from Amazon. I use gmail, who, as you know, spy on me. But so does Amazon when I buy from them. Amazon will not allow anyone to change the email address associated with their Ebook purchases. Which means if I lose my email address or its password, well, that is a lot of money I would have in limbo. Also interestingly, I don’t think Amazon allows one to leave one’s ebook collection in a will.

I could not be sure I could keep up my own named email account on some web space somewhere.

And for the record. It is wise to save copies of stuff you might need later, like receipts which come by email, the names and addresses, email addresses of those you had on an email account. That is in an orderly way. so one can find them when one wants.

hauntsanctuary, your points allows me to clarify my own thinking.

I think its easier and more practical to get a domain (with Njalla perhaps? - they were the operators of piratebay) say yourobscuredomain.com and get a trustworthy provider (take your pick: Tutanota, Protonmail, Kolabnow, etc). Just point your domain with one of the providers and they will handle mail like:
formal_email@yourobscuredomain.com
casual_usage@yourobscuredomain.com

That way if Tutanota permanently goes down or goes rogue, you can switch to another provider without losing your domain ownership.

Then just do regular mail backups by downloading your mail regularly.

This way you wont manage the mail server yourself and save yourself the headache of running one. And you retain ownership of the domain regardless of the provider. No coding needed.

Personally I’ve yet to do this myself because I have other priorities. Also owning a domain will cost you, but at least you are not paying with your personal information.