You don’t want your digital life to depend on opaque giga-corporations that spy on you all day, sell your data and eventually can shut you down anytime they want.

  • Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp are all owned by one single company (Meta). The rest is owned by Google!
  • These 2 companies control 80% of your internet activity, unless you take some steps to reduce your dependence.
  • Your Digital Footprint Is Worryingly Easy to Match to Reality. Here’s how to stop bleeding information about yourself online.
  • You need to use Free Open-Source Systems (FOSS) that protect your privacy and can never be shut down.

Here is our list of resources for you to easily make the switch to a fully decentralized, open-source online life:

Real Private Messenger

  • Use the decentralized Session Messenger instead of Whatsapp or Telegram. This is your digital “life insurance” (messengers are the backbone of your online life)
  • Session is decentralized and totally eliminates the need for a phone number or SIM card. You can now live off wifi alone!
  • Session is much better than Signal or Telegram, where the messages still go through a centralized server, and where you still need a phone number
  • Install the desktop version of the app as well

Install Session Messenger


Degoogle

r/degoogle


Aptoide – the Alternative App Store – Do not let Google Play be your gateway to the internet – they ban many apps and promote their own services

Also Google Play drains your battery, uses a lot of resources and lots of space, while the Open Source app repositories requires much less resources.


The two companies that are distributing phones with an free, open-source OS pre-installed are:

They both provide the whole ecosystem of services (just like Google does) that includes a mail ID and a sync-backup app:

1. Murena DeGoogled phones (runs on e/OS)

Murena is building a whole ecosystem alternative to Google Services, with its own versions of everything, like OsmAnd instead of Google Maps, etc:

  • e/OS An operating system alternative to Android (forked from Lineage OS)
  • Spot An uncensored, privacy-oriented alternative to Google Search
  • Murena Cloud – GDrive alternative
  • An independent App repository that includes all apps and their FOSS alternatives
  • Murena gives you a secure email (username@murena.io)”. This unique identifier will let you access /e/ online services like email, drive, calendar, contacts… from your /e/ mobile operating system

e/OS: the best Google alternative


2. Librem degoogled phone (runs on PureOS)

  • Librem 5 – Both the software and the firmware are all FOSS
  • Less complete and convenient than e/OS, but worth exploring

Librem 5: Linux-Based Smartphone


Secure your Apps

Almost all apps nowadays can be replaced by a decentralized alternative that does not belong to any company.

Many of the Open Source apps take literally 10x less space (no exaggeration) than their Google counterparts, which results in a much longer battery life.

– On phones:

  • Cromite browser
    • The most secure browser of the moment. Disables many of the features found in basic Chromium that can easily compromise user privacy.
    • Since it disables many privacy sensitive features by default and blocks a ton of trackers (and ads as a whole), it’s very fast!
    • The best feature of Cromite is the built-in ad blocking engine
    • Cromite scrambles your user-agent string, making it harder for web apps to identify your device and your overall “online fingerprints”
    • Not yet available for desktops/laptops. On laptop, use LibreWolf instead
  • Brave browser
    • Fast and secured. Blocks most ads trackers
    • Offers access to .onion addresses by opening a private window (what are .onion sites?)
    • Offers IPFS Support (to visit decentralized, uncensorable IPFS websites)
  • Tor browser
    • Free Open Source browser that protects your privacy by blocking trackers, hiding your browsing history and encrypting your traffic
    • You can access all sites that are censored or blocked by your government.
    • The Tor Project is advising against installing any Add-ons, including uBlock Origin

=> Check your “browser footprint” with Am I Unique? on different browsers, to see the results


  • NewPipe – Alternative interface to access Youtube in total privacy and without ads
    • It protects your privacy, removes ads and offers a light-weight user interface that saves your battery and memory (RAM)
    • Offers many options not available on Youtube (such as loop playing, or the ability to export and backup your playlists).
    • NewPipe is a Free Open Source System (FOSS), lightweight YouTube app – you can run it without any of the irritating Google Play Services

Download here


– On laptops:

  • Install Linux
    • If you are still using Windows, fix your privacy breach first. There can be not privacy on Windows, as spying is built-into their system
    • Windows, just like Google services and Facebook / Whatsapp / Instagram tracks all your activities (and even logs your keyboard activity)

So you must first switch from Widows to Linux:

  • Ubuntu vs Pop Os (Linux distributions):
    • Pop OS is faster, more private and looks better.
    • Ubuntu is the most popular Linux distribution, but it ships with bloatware, resulting in a relatively poor user experience and performance compared to Pop OS.
    • By default, Ubuntu collects information from your system whereas Pop OS does not store or collect any information

Pop OS is an improved, polished version of Ubuntu, the most popular Linux distro


  • Install LibreWolf browser
    • It is a secured fork of the famous Firefox browser
    • It saves a lot of resources (very lightweight)
    • It removes all the telemetry, data collection and anti-freedom features of Firefox
    • It has emerged in recent years as the best privacy browser, removing all unnecessary elements from its source code, and leaving virtually no traces

LibreWolf vs Firefox


  • Iridium browser
    • German-based privacy browser – Iridium supports most of the extensions in the Chrome Web Store
    • Like Brave, Iridium starts with the source code for Chromium, but strips out all the Google-related bits, then modifies the code and settings to increase user privacy
    • Iridium is based on the Chromium source code, while LibreWolf is based on the Firefox/Mozilla source code, which are the 2 main browser protocols in the world.
    • So you should install both LibreWolf and Iridium, which are the 2 top privacy browsers in their respective categories.

  • FreeTube – A desktop-based YouTube client for using YouTube more privately (available on Windows, Mac and Linux)
    • You can enjoy your favorite content without your habits being tracked
    • Otherwise, the Youtube/Google algorithm is so powerful that even without logging into your Google account, you can be tracked after watching 2-3 videos
  • Keepass XC – The best Open Source Password Manager, with a sleek design


Alternative Search Engines

The Search Engine Privacy Problem

Google has an opaque way of indexing links and generating search results. Users face two fundamental problems:

    • Firstly, two different users making the exact same query will often receive radically different search results, because Google has managed to collect a trove of data about its users, and it adjusts its search results in accordance with the information it has on them AND local legislation and censorships
    • Secondly, the mechanism that indexes links is unclear to users: why is one content ranked as very relevant to a given query, while another appears far below the top twenty search results, which contains much more content directly applicable to that query?

Here are the best, unbiased search engine alternatives:

  • Brave Search
  • Spot (Murena) – An improved, polished version of Searx, the best open-source metasearch engine
  • Metager – Protects against censorship by combining the results of multiple search engines. Our algorithms are transparent and available for everyone to read. Our source code is free
  • 4get.ca – A new privacy search engine
  • Ecosia – While not technically a privacy search engine, Ecosia acts as a filter between you and the mainstream search engines. Ecosia does not collect your data

Murena Spot is our favorite search engine


Private Email Services

  • DMail – AI-powered decentralized communication infrastructure built to provide encrypted emails
  • Ledger Mail – World’s first blockchainemail service
  • TildaMail – Private. Decentralized. Secure Email.Own your data. Choose where it’s stored. Protect your privacy
  • Mail2Tor – A Tor Hidden Service that allows anyone to send and receive emails anonymously. It is produced independently from the Tor Project

Web3 Apps (decentralized, uncensorable)

  • LBRYThe best decentralized video platform with built-in censorship resistance
    • Does to publishing what Bitcoin did to money
    • Odysee.com is the web-based version of LBRY. But we recommend that you download the LBRY app instead.

 

  • Decentralized VPNs
    • Orchid
    • Sentinel VPN – The codebase of the Sentinel dVPN application is completely revealed to the public, ensuring more trust than any other VPN competitor
    • Mysterium Network

 


Moneyfree Apps

By “moneyfree“, we mean apps based on the sharing economy:

  • Wifi Map The most complete wifi-sharing app
    • Access millions of wifi passwords all over the world
    • You thus can eliminate your dependency on a SIM card, if you wish so

Decentralized Social Media

Leave Twitter/Facebook and use Mastodon, a Free and Open-Source, decentralized social network

Mastodon: the most solid, uncensorable, decentralized alternative to Facebook


Free Open Source Alternatives

  • Install LibreOffice (Open Source, faster version of Microsoft Office)
  • Mozilla Thunderbird – The most efficient Open SOurce email CLIENT
  • Jitsi – Open-Source alternative to Zoom

Thunderbird: the best FOSS client to centralize all your email accounts


Use repairable hardware

1. Open Source Phones

Murena (e/OS) on Fairphone 5: a bulletproof combination 


2. Open Source Laptops

  • System76 laptopsCoreboot-based System76 Open Firmware gives you more control over your hardware, boost performance, optimize security, and vastly reduces startup times
  • Purism Librem 14 – A fully Open Source laptop, running on PureOs,A Linux distribution focusing on privacy and security. PureOS is designed to include only free software. For more advanced users
  • PineBook Pro– Designed to deliver solid day-to-day Linux or BSD experience. Review here

See also: Specialized Linux Distros for Privacy, Anonymity and Security

System76: Almost-Open-Source, repairable Linux laptops


Live on Crypto only

  • Download Edge Wallet
  • Cryptwerk is the biggest crypto-merchants directory, enabling you to live entirely on crypto
  • Dtravel – Decentralized home-sharing platform that accepts payments in cryptocurrency – Facilitates crypto bookings for over 250K destinations
  • GoURL  – A free and Open Source plugin that allows you to accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies on your website

Edge Wallet is the start of your crypto independence 


Stay informed


Free Libraries

  • Anna’s Archive. if you need any book or pdf document, go to annas-archive.org. This is an aggregator search engine for all online libraries. It mirrors all online libraries at once, such as Sci-Hub, LibGen, Z-Lib, etc, giving you free access to 84 million scholarly journal articles, and 6.6 million general-interest books

The largest open library: Mirrors Sci-Hub, LibGen, Z-Lib, OpenLib and more. 📈 25,608,184 books, 99,902,163 papers, preserved forever


Free Access Movies and Videos

  • Torrent Paradise – Decentralized version of The Pirate Bay. Use with the qBittorrent client to download
  • YTS HD movies at the smallest file size

Defunct Open Source Projects

These projects are dead now, but are extremely useful and might be revived one day:

  • OpenBazaar An open source project for free e-commerce transactions in a fully decentralized marketplace alternative to Amazon. It used cryptocurrencies as medium of exchange
  • Bitnation A cryptocurrency-based project described as a “voluntary nation”. A fully decentralized government system allowed anyone to create a “crypto-nation” not limited by land boundaries. Becoming a citizen involved recording vital records, identity and other legal events through the use of a smart contract on the Ethereum blockchain.

A decentralized governance platform to create a borderless society, transcending geographical boundaries.


MORE TECHNICAL:

How to degoogle your existing phone

This is more technical than just buying a degoogled phone, but it’s worth it. The 3 best alternatives to Android are:

1. e/OS


2. LineageOS

Less advanced than Murena, but still a very good alternative:

  • LineageOS is built on top of Google’s AOSP code (the raw basis of all Android distributions) and adding their own custom code to it, LineageOS works as a standalone ROM
  • The main advantage of LineageOS over stock-Android is the removal of all Google services
  • LineageOS has done their best to remove all traces of Google and instead relies on community-sourced alternatives for all the default apps and services
    It is free from unnecessary software often pre-installed by a phone’s manufacturer or carrier that is considered to be bloatware
  • LineageOS is optimized for battery performance
  • List of Lineage OS devices
  • LIST of devices supported by LineageOS
  • How to install LineageOS on your phone


3. GrapheneOS

GrapheneOS is more secure and private than LineageOS, but can be installed on less compatible devices. It is more suitable to advanced users.


Build Uncensorable Sites


Build Decentralized Web Networks



Advanced Privacy Resources


Ghost BSD

BSD operating systems are more hardened than any Linux OS, but less easy to use and thus less popular:

  • Ghost BSD is the most user-friendly of them. It is based on the legendary security and stability of the FreeBSD operating system
  • GhostBSD provides all the benefits of the FreeBSD operating system combined with a focus on simplicity and user-friendliness
  • GhostBSD’s Goal is to simplify FreeBSD to lower the entry-level of using FreeBSD on a desktop
  • Unlike Linux, FreeBSD is a full Operating System, not just a kernel, which gives Free BSD a lot of more advantages
  • Linux vs. BSD: 10 Key Things You Need to Know


Open Source Computer Hardware


Internet over Amateur Radio Network