The world’s securest Switzerland based emailing service provider ProtonMail goes open source with the public release of their webmail interface version 2.0.
They have also announced the release of beta version of their mobile apps for iOS and Android.
According to ProtonMail, their email service’s core cryptography code has been open source since the launch of the service but why many didn’t know about this is because the company didn’t really made that official before. The front-end encryption being used by ProtonMail is completely open source and is based on the ‘OpenPGPjs’ library.
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“ProtonMail 2.0 is a completely new code base, redesigned from the ground up to provide better performance, security, and flexibility.”
With the biggest update release of ProtonMail 2.0, the developers have made the webmail interface open source too! This gives you an opportunity to check and inspect all the code that is running on your computer behind ProtonMail. This major step has been taken in an attempt to encourage contributors to help them make ProtonMail the most secure email service.
The code repository of ProtonMail is released on GitHub under the permissive MIT license.
“All the ProtonMail code that runs on your computer is now available for inspection. We hope that by opening up our platform, we will encourage additional contributors to help us make ProtonMail the world’s most secure email service.”
Privacy cannot exist without free/open software. This is why ProtonMail is Open Source! http://t.co/Uc3hZDW2V8 pic.twitter.com/PdDP9c21jU
— ProtonMail (@ProtonMail) August 18, 2015
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For those who are interested in finding security vulnerabilities in ProtonMail or want to participate in the improvement of this email service, ProtonMail have also introduced a bug bounty program to encourage participation from the community in making the service one of the securest service ever!
The Evolution of ProtonMail
ProtonMail is an encryption based email start-up service which was founded last year in May 2014 by CERN and MIT scientists to capitalize on post-Snowden paranoia by providing client-side encryption and host servers that is safe from NSA’s snooping eyes and eavesdropping.
ProtonMail gained a lot of popularity and was able to raise over $550,000 through crowdfunding. After that, the company was able to get about $2 million funding from FONGIT and Charles River Ventures, which proves that they are backed by security institutions.
Andy Yen, Co-founder of ProtonMail, told TechCrunch:
“For privacy services, trust is very important as users are trusting us with their data, and potentially their lives. This is why we have now open sourced our web client in addition to our cryptography. However, trust involves more than just open sourcing. Users also need to know that we have the expertise, personnel, and financial resources to continue to protect their data into the future…We have institutional backers, and this will allow us to successfully carry out our development.”
For those who are concerned about the privacy of their data, Yen told BBC that the company has simplified the mailing process and they have no way to read their client’s encrypted emails.
“We’ve switched from server-side encryption to client-side encryption. All the encryption happens on the users’ devices before the data ascends to our servers.”
This is the reason why ProtonMail has gained popularity among doctors, lawyers and other users who handle sensitive user data.
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