Signal is a free, easy to use app, for Android or iPhones, that replaces the default texting app. When sending to other users with Signal installed, it’ll perform end to end encryption, meaning the cell carrier and anyone else can not read the message as it passes through the system. If sending to people without the app, it just acts like a normal insecure text.
Signal also supports encrypted voice calls.
Encryption of calls and of texts requires data or wifi connectivity, as communication is routed through the internet rather than through normal voice and text channels.
Of course, no software can replace security culture of a firewall between the aboveground and any hypothetical belowground. But it helps to normalize privacy as a default and makes it harder for corporate or government security forces to monitor everything people do. Documents released by Edward Snowden suggest that encryption methods such as those used by Signal (and by Enigmail for email) have thwarted the NSA in monitoring communications.
For the July 20 episode of Resistance Radio, Derrick Jensen interviewed Dahr Jamail, an award winning reporter for truthout.org. He began his career driven by the obvious lies surrounding the invasion of Iraq, not understanding the apathy of Americans all around him, but compelled to spend his small savings on a laptop, camera and a plane ticket to the middle east. Since then, he has continued to write about US imperialism, including oppposition to it by veterans; and about environmental issues from the BP oil spill to fracking to his current focus on anthropogenic climate disruption (climate change.)
Jamail and Jensen discuss important facts on how quickly climate disruption is advancing, its current and predicted impacts, and how official assessments consistently underestimate the harm in general caused by industrial civilization. They address the interplay of multiple aspects of ecocide and the insane lack of appropriate response by most civilized humans. The interview is an excellent fact-based reality check on our dire situation, and also inspiring as an example of one person finding his way to an appropriate response. As Jensen says, “The big distinction is not between those who believe we need militant resistance and those who believe that militant resistance isn’t necessary. I’ve always thought that the big distinction is between those who do something and those who do nothing.”