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Google continues to be an integral part of many people’s lives. Whether it be their search engine, YouTube, Gmail or other services provided by them, Google tracks and stores a lot of data.
As I adventure down my privacy journey, I have decided to take it upon myself to de-Google my life. This has proven to be difficult, but I continue to try, and I decided to share my experiences!
First up, email.
Email service options
De-Googling yourself from their email service is rather easy. Outside of Gmail, there are other well known free email services to choose from, like Outlook and Yahoo.
But, if you are de-Googling your life, these services are just as bad as Google in regards to selling your data.
What does that leave you with? Well, self-hosting an email server using Mail-in-a-Box, MailCow, or iRedMail, is an option. However, managing and maintaining an email server is time consuming.
If you do not want to use a “free” email service, or self-host an email server. You are left with using premium services.
As someone who is moving from Gmail for privacy reasons, I focused on email providers who are more privacy focused.
As an avid reader of PrivacyGuides, a community ran website that offers tips and tricks for taking back your internet privacy, I was able to take a look at the services they recommend.
The services are:
If you are interested in seeing their recommendations for the above services, you can check it out below…
Of course, there are providers not listed on PrivacyGuides, however, it is good to see a baseline for what to look for in an email provider if privacy is your reason for switching.
Going with ProtonMail
I ended up going with ProtonMail, as I was already using their VPN, ProtonVPN, and adding email offered a discounted rate.
At the time of writing this post, I have used ProtonMail for over a year, and I definitely recommend it.
Not only does Proton offer an email and VPN service, they also offer ProtonCalendar and ProtonDrive. ProtonCalendar being an encrypted calendar service, and ProtonDrive being a cloud storage solution.
Better yet, it only costs $9.99 a month to access all of these services!
There is also a free tier, for those who want to give it a try.
Honestly, de-Googling my email was easy. Yes, it costs me a monthly fee, but the features I get with my Proton Plus subscription are close enough to Google’s premium services, without the worry of them getting my data.
I highly suggest looking into a privacy-focused email provider. You may lose some convenient features, but not giving Google more of a reason to track your every action online is definitely worth it.
De-Googling should be something that everyone strives for, in my opinion!