Discover free, open-source, and secure email clients, along with some email alternatives you may not have considered.
Even when using end-to-end encryption technology like GPG, email is inherently insecure and should not be trusted for sensitive communications. Metadata is always communicated in plaintext, and even when encryption is used correctly it is very easy for either party to accidentally respond to or forward a previously encrypted message in plaintext in many clients. GPG also does not easily support modern crypto functionality such as key rotation and forward secrecy.
We recommend the following email providers for routine notifications and messages from other services that require an email address. For communications that need to be safe and secure, you should use a dedicated instant messaging tool, such as Signal.Recommended Instant Messengers
Privacy Email Tools
- gpg4usb - A very easy to use and small portable editor to encrypt and decrypt any text-message or -file. For Windows and Linux. GPG tutorial.
- Mailvelope - A browser extension that enables the exchange of encrypted emails following the OpenPGP encryption standard.
- Enigmail - A security extension to Thunderbird and Seamonkey. It enables you to write and receive email messages signed and/or encrypted with the OpenPGP standard.
- TorBirdy - TorBirdy configures Thunderbird to make connections over the Tor anonymity network. This extension is in beta and should be considered experimental.
- Email Privacy Tester - This tool will send an Email to your address and perform privacy-related tests.
- K-9 Mail - An independent mail application for Android. It supports both POP3 and IMAP mailboxes, but only supports push mail for IMAP.
- GNU Privacy Guard - Email Encryption. GnuPG is a GPL Licensed alternative to the PGP suite of cryptographic software. Tutorial. Use GPGTools for macOS.
- Mailpile (Beta) - A modern, fast web-mail client with user-friendly encryption and privacy features.