Tails. Keep the NSA away from your data

Tails, also called The Amnesic Incognito Live System, is a security and privacy focused Debian-based Linux distribution aimed at preserving your anonymity. The system is designed to work as a live system and will leave no digital footprint on the machine on which it is used unless you ask it to explicitly.

Tails | The Amnesic Incognito Live System
Tails | The Amnesic Incognito Live System

Tails relies on the Tor anonymity network to protect your privacy online, all software is configured to connect to the Internet through Tor and if an application tries to connect to the Internet directly, the connection is automatically blocked for security.

Tor is an open and distributed network that helps defend against traffic analysis, a form of network surveillance that threatens personal freedom and privacy, confidential business activities and relationships, and state security.

Online anonymity and censorship circumvention with Tor | Tails

Tor protects you by bouncing your communications around a network of relays all around the world and it prevents anyone from watching your Internet activities and your physical location.

Tails is configured with special care to not use the computer’s hard-disks, even if there is some swap space on them. The only storage space used by Tails is in RAM, which is automatically erased when the computer shuts down. So you won’t leave any trace on the computer either of the Tails system itself or what you used it for. That’s why we call Tails “amnesic”.

Use anywhere but leave no trace | Tails

Tails allows you to work with sensitive documents on any computer and protects you from data recovery after shutdown. It lives in RAM (Random Access Memory, the main memory of devices that it will be cleared after the shutdown), and doesn’t write to any other drive unless strictly specified.

You can use Tails as any other Linux live distribution, but, as a plus, you have the power of Tor ‘out of the box’ to protect your anonymity, security, and privacy.

Tails 4.0, the first version of Tails based on Debian 10 Buster, brings new versions of most of the software included in Tails and some important usability and performance improvements.

In our opinion, Tails is particularly useful for cryptocurrency operations. In fact, it also offers built-in support for cryptocurrency through the Electrum wallet for Bitcoin, but it is easy to add any wallet you need and we think it is ideal (here you can find a Guide to creating a Monero GUI wallet in Tails. It is a bit old, but the steps are the same today) for Monero. Many privacy concerned digital currency users are using Tails as the operating system of choice to get more private and secure operational cryptosystems.

Tails is also an educational environment that allows you to learn and understand operating procedures for critical environments, cases, and situations. Using the Tails operating system is a secure way of bringing your cybersecurity to the highest level and, not by chance, Tails is the system used by Edward Snowden to escape from the NSA (Inside the Operating System Edward Snowden Used to Evade the NSA. Here the article from Wired) and from the other US security agencies.

The Tails project released the latest Tails 4.1, an update to the Debian-based amnesic incognito live system that brings all the latest software (Update Linux Kernel to 5.3.9 and Tor Browser to 9.0.2) updates, bug fixes and various improvements. Take note that automatic upgrades are available from Tails 4.0 to 4.1.

So, we hope to have intrigued you enough to make you try it and experiment with it a little.

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