I'm trying to be able to receive incoming messages from "the general public", in a way which:

  1. Does not reveal my identity to the person contacting me, or to any company/entity.
  2. Does not cost money.
  3. Does not use some kind of obscure software which nobody on the planet uses. (This basically leaves e-mail as the only option, I guess.)
  4. It goes without saying, but just to make it clear: anything like Facebook, Twitter, etc. is immediately disqualified due to zero privacy (impossible to register accounts with proxies, forces "phone verification", aren't private or encrypted, etc.).
  5. Does not let the entire world read the messages. (This disqualifies using a "throwaway e-mail" service.)
  6. Allows me to, in some manner, automatically fetch the messages, preferably not using IMAP (due to privacy implications).
  7. Is based on real security, rather than some company/entity "promising" things.

The more I have thought about this, the more convinced I have become that there just is no way to do this. It basically has to be using e-mail, but e-mail is the opposite of anonymous in so many ways. I have gone through every "free e-mail provider" in existence, and they all:

  • Refuse to let me register with a proxy.
  • Want "phone verification".
  • Display CAPTCHAs forever.
  • No longer accept accounts.
  • May accept accounts only to later lock me out, when I've grown dependent on the account.

But worst of all: none of those free e-mail services, including Tutanota, provide any kind of API or even IMAP access (at least not for unpaid accounts).

I've also ruled out using a company such as Mailgun, because they require every bit of personal information from me and demand that I use a domain name to receive e-mails. Also, such a company, as well as domain registrars, are untrustworthy and may delete my domain/account or refuse access at any moment. (It has happened to myself in the past, and I know it keeps happening all the time to other naive fools who believe that they actually can own and control domains in the DNS.)

I'm fully prepared to conclude that there just is no way to do this. It really seems to be the case. However, in the event that some genius out there has some bright idea and (against all odds) wants to share it with me and the general public, please put forward your ideas!

Think of this as a kind of "whistlerblower service" where even the receiver (me) needs to stay anonymous. Also, it can't hurt to point out once again that I do not need or even want the ability to be able to reply to any of these messages. I expect them to be one-way, incoming from my point of view. No sending.

I need to be able to print some kind of "e-mail address" or "digital crypto hash" to which people are able to reasonably easily figure out how to send messages to it. It must not be Bitmessage or something else only known by the elite 0.1% of computer hackers, sadly. The sad truth is that nobody bothers to learn about and download such software. I wish it weren't the case, but it is...

Hushmail used to provide free accounts, but no longer do. Also, they don't mention accepting Bitcoin anywhere, and also don't make any mention of any API access, or even IMAP.

Proton Mail gives fake error messages upon attempted registration.

I ask you to PLEASE not respond to this without having read the above. It just wastes both our time and doesn't make anyone happy.

  • 1
    How does using a throwaway account "let the entire world read the messages"?
    – BrenBarn
    Jan 30 '20 at 8:28
  • 1
    What problems have you experienced owning and controlling DNS? I have a domain name and never lost control. I did however point it to a computer I physically own. I setup dkim to protect it being faked elsewhere.
    – cybernard
    Feb 3 '20 at 19:58
  • 1
    @cybernard The domain name system is completely centralized, with 100% of the power in the hands of a central authority which can "seize" (steal) anyone's domain at any time. You don't control nor own "your" domain.
    – truth
    Feb 4 '20 at 6:46
  • @truth sorry, that's hogwash. You do probably refer to the registries and the root servers (for which alternatives exist). But as a matter of fact DNS is decentralized. In fact that's the reason many people are afraid DNS over HTTPS will undo some of that decentralization. So you are probably talking about the bureaucracy and the rules surrounding DNS. But at the technical level calling it "completely centralized" (which you do, as you don't qualify your statement further), is and remains hogwash. May 14 '20 at 12:28

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