What’s privacy by design? In a few simple words, we might describe it as a framework that pushes for the protection of it’s users’ data above all. Thus the builders of the application will constantly ponder on whether an information needs to be accessible to anyone. And if that’s not the case, developers will handle that data using the most secure, risk-free approach.
The seven magnificent… foundational principles
A quick look at Wikipedia brings us the seven principles of privacy by design:
- Proactive not reactive: preventing risk instead of fixing things afterwards.
- Privacy as the default: no action required from the user to ensure that his privacy is respected.
- Privacy embedded into design: to make this work, the system is build with privacy in mind as opposed to adding privacy features as an afterthought.
- Full functionality: privacy shouldn’t be an excuse for substandard products.
- End-to-end security: from the moment information is entered until it’s deleted.
- Visibility and transparency: in other words, trust what you see and experience, not what the provider is telling you!
- Respect for user privacy: keep the user’s interests at heart, while giving empowering options.
Frankly, all that sounds pretty good and well… but what does it actually mean? And most importantly, how does this all apply to Seeld?
What about Seeld then?
We have developed the application while constantly wondering what could go wrong. For example, what if a malevolent entity accesses our servers? Or what if someone forces us to give the accesses and keys to the system? That lead us to making design choices that ensure your data remains private even if it’s leaked.
To put it differently, we assume that all servers will be breached and all data will leak at some point in history. So we make sure those leaks have little to no value by only dealing with encrypted payloads for which we do not possess the decryption keys.
Moreover we have included those considerations from Seeld’s early design. Truly that comes almost naturally when one puts privacy as the main objective. As a result Seeld does not give any option to make its functionality less private. If that was the case, one careless person may endanger the privacy and security of others! Instead we focused on making sure that the extra security measures were not significantly hampering the user-friendliness of the application. Ideally we crave for Seeld to be as useful and natural as any other messaging application!
Metadata, the data beyond your messages
Equally important, our efforts to preserve your privacy go beyond the messages you type. Truly, a lot of information can be indirectly divulged when using messaging apps.
As an illustration, imagine you text a person multiple times a week. Say that the messaging service provider knows who you are, how many times you texted that person and that the person is a psychiatrist. Now someone can guess you may be having a depressive episode. The real question is: who has access to that information!
To prevent such eventualities, Seeld also blinds itself from such data. For this reason it decreases the risk of “connecting the dots” as they say, and thus enforces strong end-to-end security.
Our motivation should be clear by now
By now you should have a better understanding of our motivation for Seeld. Most messaging systems aim for a plan that involves huge user acquisition, monetization, and an IPO. Our plan works at preventing pernicious third-parties from putting their grubby hands on people’s life.