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Lavabit takes a comeback to bring ‘next-gen’ email privacy

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Lavabit encrypted email service

Lavabit, an open source encrypted webmail service that was supported by prolific whistleblower Edward Snowden, has been relaunched three years after its sudden shutdown in 2013. The email provider has reiterated its promise to make “end-to-end encryption an automatic, ubiquitous and open source reality” over time.

Ladar Levison, owner and operator of Lavabit, has chosen the US Inauguration Day to bring back Lavabit to the emailing world. He says that anyone can access the free, open source library and associated command line tools of the webmail service to create and handle the new Dark Internet Mail Environment (DIME) standard. Furthermore, he confirms that former Lavabit users can access their accounts from the “Trustful” mode and update their credentials to the new DIME standard.

Aside access to previous users, the Lavabit team under Levison’s guidance is developing graphical clients for Windows, Mac OS X/iOS and Linux/Android.

Dropped original model due to authoritative dominance

Levison dropped the original Lavabit model in August 2013 after he was allegedly forced to either give the SSL keys of specific email accounts belonged to Snowden or shutdown the service. But notably, he ultimately scheduled its relaunch for the day when the US adopted the model of democracy.

“Much has changed since my decision, but unfortunately much has not in our post-Snowden world. Email continues to be the heart of our cyber-identities, but as evidenced by recent jaw-dropping headlines it remains insecure, unreliable and easily readable by an attacker,” Levison writes in a letter to Lavabit users.

Apart from the Lavabit client, Levison brought the DIME to deliver end-to-end encrypted global standard on open source mail server system Magma.

You can access the DIME-Magma combination to build a secure email platform. Also, domain operators can deploy Magma on any of their own DIME-supported servers.