The Best Privacy-Focused Hosted Email Services
Some of the best hosted email services currently available are offered Tutanota and Protonmail. They both use open source end-to-end encryption to ensure that emails sent to other people using the same email service are unreadable to anyone other than the recipient. There are some differences between the companies running these services, but one of the most interesting features comes from Tutanota.
This feature comes in the form of an encrypted inbox for people that don’t have a Tutanota account. This means if you send an email to someone using a different email service, you have the option of still sending it encrypted. As other email services will not be able to decrypt the email, Tutanota sends an email containing a link to an encrypted inbox. The inbox can only be viewed with a password that is set when the email is sent. The password needs to be sent another way, maybe through signal, or in person, but this changes the game.
Instead of needing both parties to be using the same service for the encryption to work, Tutanota has made it possible for one party to be able to ensure the privacy and security of email communication between them both. This saves you the trouble of needing to convince your friends to switch emails to communicate with them securely and privately (though they should).
Getting an Anonymous Email
Tutanota and Protonmail allow anyone to make an anonymous email address, no registration requirements, and completely free. After registering for Tutanota, it takes a few hours for the account to be automatically verified. Then, you’re all set to use one of the best anonymous email services available.
The downside to Tutanota and Protonmail, is that they can sometimes be rejected by sites requiring an email to sign up, as they distrust anonymous email addresses because they can’t trace it to a specific person like other email services. Maybe think twice about whether you really need to sign up to a site that refuses one of these emails though.
I use a Tutanota email for personal communication, and a Protonmail for business communication, though either option offers good paid features that make sense for business.
Bonus: Tutanota has their app on F-Droid, and its notification service works whether or not you have Google services installed on your phone, which is great for those using Graphene, or who didn’t install Micro-G on their Calyx setup.