- Obama: Hole U.S. ‘digging out of’ requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
- John Boehner says GOP should support gay candidates: ‘I do’
German firms poach email business after NSA snoop scandal
Question of the Day
Email users in Germany concerned about the privacy of their messages are turning to German email providers that have taken advantage of the opportunity to tout themselves as being more secure than their U.S. competitors.
While this marketing strategy is unlikely to lure many email users from across the Atlantic, it is increasingly popular with Germans who had been using sites like Gmail and Hotmail before revelations surfaced that the National Security Agency may be reading their emails with the blessing of these companies.
“The moment that the data is in the U.S., it will definitely be used by the NSA, and subsequently by other government agencies including the CIA, FBI and the DEA,” Thilo Weichert, head of the Independent Center for Data Protection, told a German news agency. “If I use Google Mail, it’s pretty certain that my data will be saved on American servers, and can then be accessed by the NSA.”
T-Online, the largest Internet service provider in Germany, which is owned by Deutsche Telekom, the same company that owns U.S. provider T-Mobile, told Der Spiegel that there has been a “stronger interest” in its email service since the NSA scandal broke.
Seeing an opportunity to attract new customers, Deutsche Telekom launched a new service known as “Email Made in Germany” earlier this month. It encrypts emails and keeps them on local servers, a more secure process than transferring emails through international servers.
Freenet has enjoyed an 80 percent increase in membership over the last three weeks, Der Spiegel reported, largely because the email provider is known for strong anonymity protection.
During the same period, 1&1, a German Web hosting company, has seen more than 100,000 new users sign up for its email services, including GMS and web.de.
This comes after Lavabit, an American email service that NSA leaker Edward Snowden is believed to have used, was shut down, leaving 300,000 users looking for another secure email provider.
It is believed that Ladar Levison, the owner of Lavabit, shut down the site rather than comply with NSA requests regarding Mr. Snowden.
“I would strongly recommend against anyone trusting their private data to a company with physical ties to the United States,” Mr. Levison warned.
German politicians have also been considering how to protect themselves from U.S. surveillance programs. A member of the business-friendly Free Democrats recently hosted a “crypto party” for fellow politicians, where they learned how to encrypt their emails.
“It’s the same as locking your car,” said Jimmy Schulz, the party’s host. “Data have to be protected from trespassers, no matter whether they are members of the intelligence service or criminals.”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Tim Devaney is a national reporter who covers business and international trade for The Washington Times. Previously, he worked for the Detroit News, Grand Rapids Press, Portland Press Herald and Bangor Daily News. Tim can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- General Motors ending Chevrolet sales in Europe to focus on Opel and Vauxhall
- 'Momentous day' for in-debt Detroit
- Cyber Monday, Gray Thursday reflect sales shift
- Bye, bye American pie? China wants in on the U.S. apple market.
- Deal with Iran can mean lower prices at gas pump
Latest Blog Entries
- Obama administration issues permits for wind farms to kill more eagles
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- Rush Limbaugh: Obama trying to make Mandela death about himself
- PRUDEN: British press horrified as London's new mayor dares to proclaim the truth
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- Activists urge Obama to go rogue, sidestep Congress
- Obama: Hole U.S. 'digging out of' requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- NAPOLITANO: Pope Francis should be saving souls, not pocketbooks
- Federal deficit shrinks 20 percent in fiscal 2014
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Red Alert focuses on the hottest political topics in the nation and calls Americans to action.
History doesn't have to be grim; there is a lot to be learned from the pages of time.
The Constitution: Every issue, every time. No exceptions, no excuses. And how to get from here to there.
Why can’t humans just be free to be humans?
White House pets gone wild!