Privacy is important! The only people who should be reading your messages are you and the people you’re talking to. I refuse to use software or services that rely on spying on their users, and you should too! If you want to communicate with me online, I would prefer that you communicate with me via the following privacy-respecting methods.

GPG Encrypted e-mail

Email is inherently insecure in its design but you can send and recieve encrypted email messages with GNU Privacy Guard (A.K.A. GPG, GnuPG, PGP, OpenPGP). Read the Free Software Foundation’s Email Self-Defense page to learn how you can start encrypting your emails with GPG. When you’re set up, send me one! This is the one method you can use where I am most likely to reply. I do use the two chat protocols below, but I am not active on them very often these days.


Matrix is a fairly recent web protocol, mostly used for chat. Matrix is Decentralized: Anyone can run a Matrix server. Here are instructions on how to run your own. Encrypted: All messages are end-to-end encrypted. Federated: All Matrix servers can interact with one another. If I have an account on the server, and you have an account on the server, we can still send messages to eachother. It’s a lot like email in this regard. Except, it’s encrypted by default. With Matrix you can also do voice and video calls. To use Matrix all you need to do is install a client, of which there are many, and register with any Matrix server. You don’t need to install anything at all, though. You can click the link below to try out Matrix with a web-based client.


XMPP is another decentralized, federated, encrypted chat protocol. Similar to Matrix but older and more established. I have XMPP chat setup right inside of Thundirbird, so this is another good way to contact me as I will be just as likely to see it as an email. There are many free and open source clients available, including Dino. If you don’t have an XMPP account, Dino will walk you through creating one on a public server. If you do so, I recommend using the server. After a quick read of’s privacy policy, I think they have decent privacy and security practices for a public server.

As far as I know, XMPP is capable of features like video, VoIP, file transfer, and others but this depends on the client and servers being used. I haven’t used it much but it looks like all Thunderbird can handle of XMPP is text.

XMPP and Matrix are very similar. Here is an article comparing the two protocols.



Signal is a private instant-messaging app. It’s my personal favorite for talking to friends and family because it is also capable of audio calls, video calls, and file transfers. Their app also synchronises itself with instances you have running on other devices. I can IM people from my phone while I’m out and when I get home to my PC later, all the messages will synchronize when I open the desktop app. It’s all end-to-end encrypted as well and sports a hero’s endorsement from Edward Snowden. The one downside is that you need to use your phone number to register. But that also makes it easy for your friends and family to find you, and start using it.

Here’s a testament to Signal’s dedication to user privacy. Recently, the FBI demanded that Signal hand over the data for certain users. Signal complied and handed over all the data they had on those users, what was their phone number (which the FBI already had), the date they created an account, and the last time they connected to the server. That’s it. That’s good security! Even the people running the project can’t access your data.

To talk to me on Signal, just download and install the app on your phone or computer, then enter my phone number. Don’t have my phone number? Well I’m not giving it out on here. 😆

Cover Photo by FLY:D on Unsplash