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In an attempt to thwart encrypted communication, Tutanota, a privacy oriented email and calendar service provider is now blocked in a few parts of Russia.
It has been revealed that the secure encrypted email service has been blocked in Russia since February 14th.
While authoritarian governments tend to prefer keeping tabs on their citizens, secured communication channels such as Tutanota tend to restrict such surveillance.
“Encrypted communication is a thorn in the side to authoritarian governments like Russia as encryption makes it impossible for security services to eavesdrop on their citizens. The current blocking of Tutanota is an act against encryption and confidential communication in Russia,” said the company’s co-founder Matthias Pfau.
According to the OONI Explorer (“an open data resource on internet censorship around the world”), Tutanota is currently blocked in some parts of Russia, and is also currently listed in the registry of blocked sites.
Countries such as Egypt have also blocked Tutanota since October 2019.
Russian users can still continue using Tutanota with the help of a VPN or by browsing through TOR.
Responding to being blocked in parts of Russia, Tutanota said that Russia citizens were being deprived of privacy.
“We condemn the blocking of Tutanota. It is a form of censorship of Russian citizens who are now deprived of yet another secure communication channel online.
“At Tutanota we fight for our users’ right to privacy online, also, and particularly, in authoritarian countries such as Russia and Egypt,” wrote Matthias.
Tutanota’s co-founder also wrote that countries such as the US and Germany weren’t commonly prey to such censorship acts as they have better and more stringent laws to protect user privacy and communication tools online.
Tutanota has been operating as an open-source, secure email service allowing users to access its services for free, while offering premium options to paid users as well.
What’s more, Tutanota is based in Germany, a country offering one of the world’s best data protection and privacy laws.