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The aim of this website
is to help you avoid paying for software you don't want
when you buy a computer.

How should we behave in the post-Snowden era?

If you wish to help translating this page into other languages, please contact us at contact@racketiciel.info.

Thanks to Edward Snowden's revelations, we know that life with computers has entered an era where anything worse is always possible. Evidences have been published, that show that intelligence agencies stimulates modifications of hardware and software in order to be able to infiltrate at will.

What should the user of a computing device strive to do?

By default, the user of a computer or of a telephone (since a telephone is a computer) should be suspicious.

Examples of recommended behaviours. Never store your credit card number on a website, it can be robbed. Be aware that big companies that collect our personal data collaborate, whether willingly or not, with intelligence services. Read more.

The user must trust only free software and check the chain of trust.

Each piece of software has been written. Only free software can be audited by other programmers, modified and then redistributed. Free software communities strive to create controlable and checkable chains of trust.

Examples of recommended behaviours. Choose Firefox OS rather than Android. Use Firefox (Why Firefox?) rather than Google Chrome, Internet Explorer or Safari. Use LibreOffice rather than Microsoft Office. Choose a community GNU-Linux distribution rather than MacOS or Microsoft Windows. Buy hardware provided with free software, or without any software, from good computer manufacturers or resellers. Buy hardware that use only free firmware in the BIOS and in the network chip. Read more.

Turn to systematic encryption

Examples of recommended behaviours. Browse only websites available in HTTPS (with a padlock in the status bar). Insist that frequently visited websites should present HTTPS by default. Read more.

Prefer geopolitical diversity for hardware

Examples of recommended behaviours. Boycot providers known for their (unintentional or not) security flaws. Avoid combining a computer running Microsoft Windows (USA) with a router by Cisco (USA). Avoid combining an Apple computer (USA) with a Cisco router (USA), or a Lenovo computer (China) with a Tenda router (China). An international community GNU-Linux distribution like Debian, elaborated by citizens from the USA, Europe, China, Taïwan, and from the rest of the world, is a token of trust given the divergence of the political interests of the various contributors. Read more.

Demand the end of inertia selling (forced sale) of the operating system

Inertia selling (forced sale) of a preloaded operating system, most often non-free, with almost every computer or telephone (since a telephone is a computer), diverts the user from free systems. Yet more than anything, the free character of the software is a token of trust.

Examples of recommended behaviours. Demand the end of inertia selling (forced sale) by signing and promoting the international petition (see also other languages).

Further information

The more detailed original text Comment se protéger de l'informatique, ou l'informatique à l'ère post-Snowden is the raw material for an educational activity entitled Dessine-moi les méchants ! (for our children to enquire and ask us). Spread the word!