Tired of the NSA Reading Your Email? Harvard, MIT Students Have an Answer

The National Security Agency building at Fort Meade, Md.
The National Security Agency building at Fort Meade, Md. –CHARLES DHARAPAK/AP

Tired of hearing about the NSA exploiting Heartbleed, tapping your phone, and just generally invading your privacy? You might be in luck, thanks to five Harvard and MIT alumni with a penchant for privacy.

While working at a nuclear research center in Switzerland, the students found they shared a similar desire: they all wanted a more secure email service. So, the brainy bunch set out to create a truly private email provider. After several weeks of testing, the service goes live today, May 19, BostInno reported.

The new email platform, known as ProtonMail, has plenty of neat features, including privacy protection from the Swiss government, encrypted data, and a multi-tiered pricing model that includes a free version that anyone can access. But our favorite part, (and the part that will most make you feel like you’re in Mission: Impossible) is the self-destruct feature, which allows users to send emails that basically implode in the recipient’s inbox after a specified amount of time. Boom.


From BetaBeat:

First, they're incorporated in Switzerland, "which offers some of the strongest privacy protection in the world for both individuals and entities," the site says. They also use to end-to-end encryption and take extremely intense user authentication measures, meaning your data is apparently inaccessible to the ProtonMail team, let alone any government.


ProtonMail also has a SnapChat like feature, wherein users can program their emails to self-destruct once they've been in a recipient’s inbox for a certain period of time.

ProtonMail’s website says they have already had a heavy influx of registrations, so if you want to start sending messages like a secret agent with protection from the NSA’s surveillance, you might want to check the service out soon.

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