For anyone trying to evade the NSA and other prying eyes from his or her Internet data, Edward Snowden has some services for you. There are various—albeit onerous—ways to protect your online self, as detailed in this handy Atlantic Wire guide. Then, there are the Snowden ways. Since learning about the former NSA employee turned whistleblower, we have also had the chance to learn about the companies he has trusted for his digital protection, which is an incredible brand endorsement for any pro-privacy, anti-government-snooping organization out there. So, if you're looking for that kind of thing out of an Internet provider, why not go with the ones Snowden himself trusts? Here's how to avoid the NSA the Snowden way.
Snowden uses a service called Lavabit for his email, according to a message he sent to the human rights organization he met with in Russia today. With Gmail, Outlook, AOL, and Yahoo all out of the question because these companies participate in the NSA's PRISM program, careful emailers need something off the grid, so to speak. Lavabit, however, has the added bonus of lots and lots of encryption. It uses Secure Sockets Layer encryption to "ensure that information could be transported securely over an untrusted network" and also has something it calls asymmetric encryption that "provides a priceless level of security" by using "public key and private key encryption to make messages unreadable without knowing a user's plaintext password." In other words, it's impossible to know the content of your email without knowing your password as well. Also, for those who don't like selling their information to marketers, Lavabit promises not to do that either, making all of its money off of its premium account subscription model.