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War crimes & military coups: Here's our take on secure comms and why they matter
Brutal violent crimes by military leaders in Myanmar led a U.N. investigator to recommend protestors use ProtonMail and Signal to communicate securely.
While it’s unfortunate such an extreme but real case study exists in current events, the complex and violent situation in the Southeast Asian nation of Myanmar emphasizes the criticality of secure communications in modern times.
Following a military takeover of Myanmar that ousted the elected government, over six hundred civilians have been killed by security forces following the February 1 coup, with clashes between civilians and security forces presently ongoing.
In an effort to hold accountable those military and government leaders responsible for the coup and serious international crimes against Myanmar’s citizenry, a spokesman for the Geneva, Switzerland-based U.N. investigatory team encouraged individuals with evidence of the use of lethal force, unlawful arrests, torture, and detentions of citizens to rely on secure means of communications to contact the investigations team.
Specifically, the U.N. investigator directly cited ProtonMail and Signal messaging app as two primary means by which people can securely communicate amidst the nation’s turmoil and violence — a critical function for the U.N.’s Human Rights Council as they seek to consolidate evidence of the most serious crimes committed in the country.
While we find most unfortunate and tragic the loss of life in Myanmar, we are thrilled to see the U.N. and other bodies recognize the value and criticality of secure communications, made most accessible to the public by means such as ProtonMail and Signal, which we ourselves have been touting for years (again, if you haven’t read it check out our free digital security guide here).
ProtonMail reported a whopping 25,000% increase in the use of their services following events in Myanmar, and we would expect that number to continue to rise given the quality, design, and uncompromising privacy and security value offered by the Switzerland-based service.
As we’ve covered before, not only is ProtonMail’s base service free to use, but it offers zero-knowledge, end-to-end encrypted communications that are independently audited, open source, and based in Switzerland (for their privacy laws and protections). Currently a Gmail user? No sweat — they make it easy to migrate to their privacy-conscious ecosystem. Not convinced you’re ready to leave the Google bubble? Take a look at the header image for a quick snapshot of all the data Google collects and uses against you, compared to that of ProtonMail. The results speak for themselves, but you can learn more here.
We’re not affiliates of ProtonMail, but we wish we were — this is a top-notch service at the leading edge of online privacy and security communications, only guaranteed to become more critical over time. Coup or not, everyone stands to benefit from privacy and security in the age of digital communications, warfare, and life.