Micah F. Lee: 'Don’t Succumb to Security Nihilism'



Is the EFF giving any particular software a stamp of approval?

Seems like it’s time for “paranoid linux” - is there any possibility that a single, nearly bulletproof distro could give justifiable confidence to unsophisticated users?

This “paranoid Linux” would not have any networking support.


The EFF Surveillance Self-Defense site:

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From that link: “End-to-End Encryption of Specific Emails […] Probably the easiest way to start using GnuPG is to use Mozilla Thunderbird with the Enigmail plugin. You can find the quick start guide for installing and configuring Enigmail here.”

The link from the text: https://www.enigmail.net/documentation/quickstart.php

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There’s SELinux, a set of kernel patches originally developed by the NSA, but it’s not even remotely for “unsophisticated users.”

OK, so let’s say I do fend off my nihilism about the rebels ability to scrap together some linux-based security x-wings, and that the chosen ones of the open-force software movement will put some free, uncrackable, software out there. That still leaves me pretty damn nihilistic about the human side of this whole shebang. I’m not so sure the solution is a technological one. What makes me want to go back to be is that there are thousands of people willing to do the actual work of the NSA, and millions more willing to pay them to do it, or at least unwilling to rip up the check. Yes, securing your communications and making them private is a critical step, and one that would be a good idea even without tyrannical overlords, but it doesn’t make me feel much better about the war on ourselves writ large.

Paranoid Linux was the name of the Linux distro that Cory’s characters in Little Brother used. If I’m recalling the details correctly, it was put together mainly by German hackers (presumably the Chaos Computer Club) with the idea of using secure tools by default. At the moment the more useful thing from Little Brother would be the email service Marcus used. One run by The Pirate Party of Sweden.

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