Servers

The only way to have full control over your personal data is to run your own server. This is not for everyone though, as it requires considerable time investment and technical knowledge.

Disk Encryption
Notes

2014-05-28: TrueCrypt currently has security issues and is not recommended.

If you’re running GNU/Linux, dm-crypt with LUKS is the recommended encryption option.

Gentoo GNU/Linux maintains a guide for dm-crypt with LUKS.

Arch GNU/Linux maintains a guide to dm-crypt with LUKS. Also useable for Parabola GNU/Linux.

Slackware Linux maintains a guide to dm-crypt with LUKS.

Transparency in this context means that individual programs don't need to manage encryption of their own data, because this is provided equally for all programs by the encryption tool (like dm-crypt). More details on this in the Wikipedia.

Avoid
DNS
Notes

Google Public DNS permanently logs your ISP and location information for analysis. Your IP address is also stored for 24 hours.

OpenNIC has not adopted an official policy concerning log query privacy/anonymization. More information here.

Avoid
Google Public DNS
OpenDNS
Email
Notes

For more email providers, take a look at Privacy-Conscious Email Services. Please decide for yourself whether if you trust them with your data. For more discussion about safe email providers, please see issue #461.

MyKolab is hosted in Switzerland and benefits from the strong Swiss privacy laws. It is run exclusively with free software and using the service supports the development of Kolab. Also, it lets you export all your data at any time.

Riseup’s services may also be accessed via their Tor Hidden Service addresses. A list is available here.

Why not Hushmail? See 'compromises to email privacy'.

If you have the technical aptitude, consider running your own mail server.

Avoid
Gmail
GroupWise
IBM Notes
Microsoft Exchange
Microsoft Outlook
Yahoo! Mail
Yandex.Mail
Enterprise Suite
Notes
The enterprise suite category is for solutions for organizations that cover more than 10 categories in an integrated fashion (ex.: logins work throughout all apps, etc.)
Avoid
G Suite
Office 365
Zoho Office Suite
File Storage & Sync
Notes

This section has been carefully curated to only include software that encrypts data on the client. That means your data should be secure even if servers it's stored on are compromised.

Avoid
Dropbox
Google Drive
Microsoft OneDrive
Instant Messaging
Notes

“Off-the-Record Messaging, commonly referred to as OTR, is a cryptographic protocol that provides strong encryption for instant messaging conversations. OTR uses a combination of the AES symmetric-key algorithm, the Diffie–Hellman key exchange, and the SHA-1 hash function. In addition to authentication and encryption, OTR provides perfect forward secrecy and malleable encryption.

The primary motivation behind the protocol was providing deniability for the conversation participants while keeping conversations confidential, like a private conversation in real life, or off the record in journalism sourcing.”

The Guardian Project hosts a fantastic how-to guide to chatting securely on Android with ChatSecure.

Threema is not recommend by PRISM Break as it is closed source software. Freely available source code is a necessary condition for privacy and security.

Avoid
Discord
Facebook Messenger
Google Hangouts
ICQ
LINE
Skype
Snapchat
Tencent QQ
Viber Messenger
WeChat
WhatsApp
Mesh Networks
Notes

A mesh network is a decentralized peer-to-peer network, with user-controlled physical links that are usually wireless.

“Mesh networking (topology) is a type of networking where each node must not only capture and disseminate its own data, but also serve as a relay for other nodes, that is, it must collaborate to propagate the data in the network.”

Avoid
Operating Systems
Notes

Apple, Google, and Microsoft are allegedly a part of PRISM. Their proprietary operating systems cannot be trusted to safeguard your personal information from the NSA. We have two free alternatives: GNU/Linux and BSD.

GNU/Linux has a much larger community to help you with the transition. It’s recommended that you begin your explorations by looking for a GNU/Linux distribution that suits your needs. Additionally the Free Software Foundation hosts a list of completely Free distributions.

Debian has a long tradition of software freedom. Contributors have to sign a social contract and adhere to the ethical manifesto. Strict inclusion guidelines make sure that only certified open source software gets packaged in the main repositories.

Fedora is a community edition that serve as the stable basis for enterprise ready GNU/Linux distributions with commercial support. Companies all over the world trust Red Hat Inc. because of their transparency throughout the whole development process.

Canonical’s Ubuntu is not recommended by PRISM Break because it contains Amazon ads and data leaks by default. GNU/Linux distributions based on Ubuntu are also currently not recommended due to several other reasons.

Avoid
Productivity
Notes

Riseup also offers email, XMPP, chat and data hosting (via Up1) services, all of which are accessible through Tor Hidden Service addresses. The list of these addresses is available here.

Avoid
Doodle
Evernote
Google Docs
GroupWise
Microsoft Outlook
Zoho Docs
Social Networks
Notes

If you have system administration knowledge, please strongly consider running an instance of pump.io (or something else) for your friends, family, or favorite community. Many of them would be willing and grateful to escape Facebook if you provide them a way out.

For those of you without your own server, RetroShare is the easiest way to start your own encrypted social network.

Avoid
Facebook
Google+
LinkedIn
Snapchat
Twitter
Video & Voice
Notes

Get a free SIP account for Linphone with the Linphone Free SIP service. Note: Linphone only supports encryption for voice and video, not for instant messaging.

Avoid
Discord
Facebook
Skype
TeamSpeak
Ventrilo
Web Search
Notes

DuckDuckGo is a software-as-a-service (SaaS) hosted around the world that provides you with anonymous search results from these sources. DDG open source components are available here.

There is also a DuckDuckGo hidden service at 3g2upl4pq6kufc4m.onion for Tor users.

MetaGer is a SaaS by the German non-profit SUMA e.V. that provides you with anonymous meta search results.

Startpage is a SaaS hosted in the USA and the Netherlands that provides you with anonymous Google search and image results through a free proxy.

Avoid
Google Search
Microsoft Bing
Yahoo Search
Yandex Search