L's notes

Privacy focused eMail

TL,DR: eMail is a shitty protocol, even encrypted mail sucks. Depending on the usecase, go use briar, signal or [[matrix]].
If you have to use eMail, be careful: even "secure" providers like protonmail may be legally forced to corrupt your security.

--> Look for a local tech collective like systemli or riseup.

Basic terms

You should know what those are:

  • e2ee -> end to end encryption
  • ZKA -> zero-knowledge-architecture
  • IMAP/SMTP -> protocols used to recieve and send mail with mail clients
  • mail client (eg: thunderbird, Postbox, FairEmail) -> email program
  • prices are per month with a monthly billing cycle

Classic Freemail

e.g.: Google Mail, Microsoft Outlook, Apple iCloud, yahoo-mail

DO NOT USE ANY OF THOSE! There are many explanaitions online why you shouldnt.


Own server, own domain

  • A fucking PAIN in the ass to maintain
  • usually a security nightmare
  • domain can be easily linked to you
  • will be IP blocked by most spam filters

--> DONT DO IT, unless you know 200% what you are doing

Included with webhosting

  • hosting websites =/= hosting mail -> still not very secure
  • domain is still tied to you
  • pgp is always possible
  • imap is always possible

but overall still better than freemail


No free tier. Paid tier: 1€

  • Storage: 2gb (more: 0.25€/GB)
  • Security: 2FA,
  • Additions: Calendar, Contacts
  • uses green energy

Domains: posteo.[lots of tlds]


  • payment info is not linked to your mail (!!!)
  • optional: encryption at rest (but the keys are generated and stored on the posteo server)

Payment Methods: Bank transfer, Credit Card, PayPal, CASH!

Tech Collectives

Systemli, riseup, etc

  • payment is not linked to you
  • no logs and full disk encryption
  • IMAP and PGP works
  • not always 2FA


  • no zero knowledge architechture
  • very limited space
  • may be IP blocked by some spam filters


Free tier:

  • Storage: 500mb,
  • Security: 2FA,
  • Additions: Calendar, Contacts

Paid tier:

  • More Storage,
  • aliases,
  • IMAP/SMTP, ActiveSync,
  • Own Domains


  • no true zero knowledge architecture!

Payment Methods: Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, Bitcoin, Litecoin


Free tier:

  • Storage: 1gb,
  • Security: 2FA,
  • Additions: 1 Calendar,
  • Add. restrictions: search only past 4 weeks

Paid tiers:

  • More Storage,
  • aliases,
  • Own Domains
  • multiple users: 12€ each

Available domains:

  • tutanota.com
  • tutanota.de
  • tutamail.com
  • tuta.io
  • keemail.me


  • NO IMAP because of its zero-knowledge-architecture
  • NO PGP built in! You have to use something like mailvelope
  • uses green energy

Payment Methods: Credit Card, PayPal, (soon: monero)


Free tier:

  • Storage: 500mb,
  • Security: 2FA,
  • Additions: Calendar, Contacts
  • Add. Restrictions:
    • 150 Messages per day,
    • only 3 Folders / Labels
    • no autoresponder
    • no custom filters

Paid tiers:

  • more messages per day
  • More Storage,
  • more aliases,
  • Own Domains
  • multiple users: 8€ each

Available domains:

  • protonmail.com
  • protonmail.ch
  • pm.me


  • IMAP/SMTP is possible with a bridge (linux, macOS, windows), maintaining the zero-knowledge-architecture

Payment Methods: Credit Card, PayPal, Bitcoin, CASH!

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