Manifesto: Fight For Your Freedom

We are on the last hundred meters with our product launches – the VPN Mac beta version is out, so is the VPN Android version – and this means we finally have more time to engage with the people who use CyberGhost and talk about ideas. Discussing ideas always makes my day. So here is a thought for today:

Freedom. Our freedom.

We often talk about it here at CyberGhost, as much as we talk about privacy and security. And sometimes I forget what freedom is all about. But then I remember, because I hear about ordinary people and their stories, about journalists sentenced to prison because they had the courage to speak out, or about how some governments censor their citizens.

fight-for-your-freedom

When I read about stuff like that, the lights turn on for me and everything comes into focus.

Humanity has spent its last hundred years in great wars (28th June 1914 is the day World War One began) and it has been a long, exhausting fight for power, for human rights, justice and equality. I can only mention a few of the incredible people who fought it:

  • Martin Luther King
  • Gandhi
  • Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Nelson Mandela

And I dare to say even Edward Snowden.

We owe our rights to these people.

One year ago, on the 20th of May 2013, Edward Snowden left his comfy, secure job with the NSA to let the world know about what’s happening. I often consider this and I realize how much courage it takes to give it all up, for a greater idea.

Looking back, I really think the fights people like Snowden have fought have brought us where we are today. It was all worth it. We are more free than ever, most of us at least. We get to choose our jobs (or even if we should work or do our own thing), we get to choose who we love; we get to choose where we live. We are so much more free, but we are still not completely free.

I call you now to this fight. Defend your rights. Don’t let a government or organization decide what kind of information you have access to, what you should watch or what kind of scandals should make the news. Don’t just sit by and let them survey you. You are not a lab rat. I know this might sound harsh, but it is only up to you to do it.

You deserve to choose, you deserve to have your privacy rights respected, and you deserve to see what’s really going on. Don’t let anybody keep you in the dark.

How can you do this?

I know it’s hard. Life is short, and we need to pick our battles. But you too can do something: at the very least, don’t close your eyes. Read and learn about what is going on. Information is power. Tell others, use technology to your advantage. The tools are there, you just need to reach out and grab them.

We are here to support this, so we’ve decided to spend more time with those who want to join the discussion, to talk about what we can do and about how one can protect himself and spread the word.

We are calling out to the members of our community to join us into this conversation, to take part in our workshops and spread the word to others. We will organize monthly workshops and community support meetings.

Leave us your contact details and we’ll let you know when we have the first online get-together. We’re so excited about this, and we look forward to hear from you!

Please let us know what you think about this last year, do you things have things improved? Do we have more online freedom and security? Do you think Snowden really had a concrete impact on the society?




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Edward Snowden in Bucharest

These past months have been really exciting for CyberGhost VPN, working on releasing the Mac version and the Android App, moving to a new location, increasing our team. But nothing has prepared us for this great moment in our lives: we just bumped into Edward Snowden in the Old City Center, in Bucharest!

snowden in bucharest Continue reading

CEO-Blog: The story behind my tin foil hat video

Tin foil hat

If you think a tin foil hat makes you look silly, I totally approve that. And if you wonder how I came to this point, here’s the story:

As Edward Snowden exposed the NSA program Prism, I was surprised to find out that reality is far worse than any science fiction scenario or conspiracy theory. Even as a co-founder and CEO of a VPN company, I found the scale of these operations through an US government agency hard to believe until everything was confirmed and approved. Then, the first picture that popped into my mind were these people wearing tin foil hats designed to block their thoughts from being intercepted and  controlled. And for the first time I could really empathize with them.

Then, it all got even worse with Tempora, the program assigned with the full record of all internet traffic through the British secret service, GCHQ.  And from there on it was pretty clear that Prism and Tempora are just small pieces of the puzzle and maybe by the end we’ll all end up wearing tin foil hats.

The next level was to realize that our politicians are either not willing or able to defend our basic human rights, such as privacy. Then I heard Barak Obama, the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate reacting to the scandal by stating that we can’t have 100% security and 100% privacy. In other words, we all should have 0% privacy to maybe get a bit more security. Hans-Peter Uhl, the German spokesman for interior security of the CDU/CSU faction in the Bundestag says that the state anyway can’t help and people should encrypt their data by their own, if they want to have privacy. Sounded like they were making fun of each and every single one of us.

I talked to a lot of people in the last weeks about the above mentioned topics and I got a lot of replies, ranging from “yes, I always knew that” or “Your fault, if you use Facebook” to“I have nothing to hide” – but one reaction was always the same: “What can we do? Nothing.” And I thought that this is not true. We can do something. We can’t wear a tin foil hat. Or we shouldn’t. Seriously, that thing looks silly. But CyberGhost VPN is a great tool for locking your metadata away from this massive violation of privacy! Use it instead of a tin foil hat and take your privacy seriously.

And in response to that I put my tin foil hat on to show the world that a VPN works like a charm:

 Tin Foil Hat Video

Don’t forget: Here at CyberGhost, we believe that privacy is for everyone and with our current campaign, we’ve been striving to make it accessible and convenient.

You just have to go on www.worthofprivacy.com, decide how much your privacy is worth to you and we deliver you 12 month of CyberGhost VPN with no questions asked.