Remember those rumors about Anonymous hacktivists creating their own social media? Well, they aren’t! However, some privacy advocates are indeed working on a platform dedicated to protecting your privacy and they have called it Minds.com.
Over the past couple of years, online privacy has become one of the major concerns among Internet users throughout the world. The issues over privacy escalated when it was discovered that social media sites like Twitter and Facebook have sold user’s private information to various companies and advertising agencies in order to generate greater revenue. That’s not all, the information was also shared with government agencies such as the NSA and GCHQ.
To overcome the user’s privacy concerns, Bill Ottman along with a team of other privacy advocates has built his very own social network, Minds.com, which aims to provide its users with maximum privacy.
Since the news broke, Minds.com has been met with conspiracies and misunderstandings such as the social media is owned and operated by hacktivist group Anonymous or maybe this is another honey trap planned by security agencies in the name of privacy (referring to the ex-Anonymous hacker Sabu who later worked for the FBI to bust LulzSec hackers).
So recently we got in touch with Bill Ottman, who claims that the social network is aimed to provide people with a platform where people can freely share/upload personal information without the anxiety over the information being leaked or sent to the government or third party agencies. He further added, there is only a handful of Anonymous hacktivists who are actively taking an interest in the project.
According to Bill, Minds is the first social network that will allow you to create a completely anonymous profile as you are not required to provide real information, not even a real email address. And if you do provide any sensitive information, it will remain encrypted. The company won’t even have access to the private conversations and messages being exchanged between you and other users.
Bill said that,
“We are making one of the best attempts to co-create a truly free, open-source and encrypted social media platform that actually rewards people.”
While interviewing Bill, we found out that the company’s encryption has not been broken to date and he was quick to state that Minds may not be a 100% secure social networking website, which is seemingly an impossible task, but if you wish you can use Tor and other similar tools on your desktop and mobile devices for an added level of anonymity.
In order to create a secure network and improve the overall security of the network, they have planned to team-up with ethical hackers. Needless to say, Minds has received support from several members of Anonymous and hacktivist organizations that aim to promote privacy.
— Minds (@minds) June 17, 2015
Since the majority of potential users of Minds social networking website are likely to want to preserve anonymity we asked Bill Ottman about the authenticity of the servers to which he was very accommodating.
When Minds was officially unveiled, hundreds of Anonymous hacktivist accounts on Twitter and other social networks begun to propagate positive as well as negative updates. That’s when it was thought maybe Anonymous hacktivists are backing this project.
Some of HackRead’s followers on Twitter asked one question repeatedly that if big Anonymous handles on Twitter like “@YourAnonNews is supporting Minds.com? We asked exactly the same question and Ottman’s reply was spot on.
“We never claimed to speak for all of anonymous. That is a total misconception perpetuated by various media outlets. It is impossible for anyone to speak for the movement based on the decentralized nature of the it. Minds has thousands of anon accounts now, some big, some small. In regards to the large anonymous accounts on twitter (who we have nothing against and want to talk with), since when do they speak for the whole movement?”
Bill also raised a question,
“Why would it make sense that the most listened to voices of anonymous would be based on a proprietary and unencrypted network like twitter? Why do they object to Minds but then simultaneously constantly use twitter which is far from transparent, not FOSS and not actively fighting for Internet freedom?”
He further added,
“Our plan is to release the full stack this year and federate with other decentralized social networks. We are not the only one and it’s critical that we work together. We just released an incredible amount of code and are eager for the community to keep opening up issues and contributing.”
Bill said that doubts and suspicions are much appreciated because they are healthy and important for the success of this social network. The developers and creators at Minds are trying their level best to provide an ultimate level of security to the users. They have migrated to FOSS and encrypted platforms which is crucial to empowering the Internet freedom movement.
Basically, they want this network to be powered by the people, and apart from keeping all of their information encrypted and secured, they are also providing massive viral reach to the users. This way, people are gaining thousands of real followers in few days just by boosting their posts using the virtual currency that are being given away by remaining active on the social media, and completing various milestones and actions i.e. commenting, subscribing, uploading etc.
If you have any question regarding Minds, feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow them @minds.