Updated 06 April 2021.
Copyright: European Union Public License, version 1.2 (EUPL-1.2).
In order to benchmark websites and blogs, not overlook some features and have consistency across our articles, we designed a list of features to review.
1.1- Code & developers.
- Code: Open source or audited by trusted third party.
- License: FOSS (Free Open Source Software), or Freemium.
- Liveliness: Actively maintained: App is regularly updated.
- Support: Emergency support by the provider. The team is answering to support requests from users.
- Ownership: Who owns the body behind the development and maintenance of the app.
- Platforms: Multi-platform, Windows, Linux, MacOS, Android, iOS, Ubuntu Touch etc.
- App stores: Available from alternative repositories: APKpure, F-Droid, Github, team’s website etc. That way user doesn’t have to use a Google or Microsoft account.
- Apk Signature: Signature key provided on website to check that APK downloaded has not be tampered with.
- Digitally signed with Microsoft: So as not to trigger a warning from Windows SmartScreen.
- Intuitive: Adoption from the team is easy even for non geeks, from installation to using all most features.
- Same features: On all types of operating systems: For example features available on the Android is the same as with iOS which is the same as on Windows which is also available on Linux.
- Administration of users: Not just one single admin access that has to be shared (like Medium), but can create editor’s access to the team (like WordPress, Steemit).
- Provides Forums:
- Provides Blog:
- Provides RSS feed:
- File hosting: Ability to host any type of files.
- SEO friendly. Content must be accessible to search engines.
- Own domain name: You can use your own domain in the URL.
1.5- Security & Privacy.
- No identifying information: At purchase and set up (email, phone number, credit card).
- No permission request for device access: Doesn’t access device’s data at installation. Doesn’t scavenge on your contacts and media files.
- Resistance to state-sponsored criminals: Police, prosecutors etc. Their crimes are “legal” since they’ve corrupted state institutions. They are the most dangerous sort of criminals, to an individual or to a country. If they’ve done something illegal, they can cover it up any ways they like. They can intercept and read IMAP, POP3, TLS, SSL. They can spoof your email provider SSL certificate. They can have access to your SMS, emails, meaning a recovery option is often an easy attack possibility for them.
- Not in a 5 eyes country: Whether for the servers used or the team/company developing the app: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, United States.
- 2FA. Can enforce the use of two factor authentication for each user.
- Access and activity logs: To know when and by whom the app has been accessed.
- IP restrictions: To restrict access to only pre-approved IP addresses.
- TOR sign up: Ability to create an account using TOR.
- Self-destruct account: Account is deleted after set period without logging in.
1.6- Price and value.
- Cost-effectiveness: For large user base, affordable monthly fee or one-off license fee. If you have 15 people in your team, your organisation can reasonably afford the monthly fee.
- Anonymous payment: Can pay using anonymous cryptocurrency (Monero).