June

June is International Security Month!

Okay, we just made that up, but we are devoting this newsletter to security, security, security! And encourage you, yes you, dear Riseup user, to do one or two easy things this month to make your activism more secure.

Invite your People to the Dance

Encourage the people you organize with to use Riseup emails and lists (or other secure providers 1). Why? The more webs of communication that happen over secure networks, the more secure our movements and work will be overall.

We know that many governments have an extremely accurate map of who communicates with who across a country and between countries 2. We know that many governments persecute, arrest, and threaten activists when they become too popular and are deemed a threat. Now, imagine groups of people dropping off of this very accurate map. The more people who are not on the map, and the more communications that aren’t mapped, the less any government can be sure who’s connected to who, and how best to disrupt our social movements.

More info at — help.riseup.net/security
(Currently only in English — sorry.)

1 help.riseup.net/resources

2 help.riseup.net/social-network-map

Save the world with better passwords

Well, you probably won’t save the world, but you’ll make yourself more secure. Passwords are almost always the weakest link in any security system, and fairly soon we’ll be asking all Riseup email users to change their passwords to make sure everyone has “strong” passwords and are less likely to get hacked. We’ve installed some software so it won’t allow for weak passwords. Why do we care so much?

If your account gets hacked, it effects not just you, but everybody you have exchanged emails with, and all Riseup users. When one Riseup email account gets hacked, it can lead to all Riseup email getting blocked, since hackers usually use your email to spread spam and viruses.

It is more secure to write down your password in a secure place than to use a password that is easy to crack. Also, don’t use the same password for all your accounts. You can use the same password for insecure logins (for example: logins to news sites), but you should have unique passwords for every secure login, such as Riseup email.

So how do you create a strong password that is easy to remember? Here are two ideas:

Multiple words strung together, with numbers and uppercase letters, can make a great password. For example: “k8isMymiddleName”.

Create an acronym from a phrase that you like. For example, turn “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” into “tRw!nbTV”.

And finally, never tell anyone your password, especially if they ask for it. Don’t tell your best friend, lover, parrot, or therapist. There is no reason anyone should ever have it but you.

Give Me Your Password, Please?

No! Your answer to this question should always be no, no, no, no matter who’s asking it. We will never ask it of you in an email. Your friends don’t need to know. Neither does your dog.

Mutual Aid is Action

The last way of practicing good security for our movements is supporting us. Not to brag, but we are the largest secure email and list providers in the world, and we do a damn fine job of encrypting your information and storing very little of your information. Just like we need you to practice security to have strong and beautiful social movements, we need you to support us. Please, please, please. We rely on your donations to keep our servers running and donations have been down lately.

Donate at: riseup.net/donate