Internet privacy is a sticky topic in this post-Snowden world. At this point, many of us just assume that once our words become bits and hit a network, some entity is tracking and analyzing them.
As part of a new campaign out of Brazil, Amnesty International is trying to make sure that only human eyes are spying your online communications. According to Amnesty International, 80% of Brazilians are against the concept of the U.S. government intercepting or storing Internet data. (Interestingly, they are more okay with the Brazilian government doing the same thing, with only 65% saying they’re against local authorities intercepting, storing, and analyzing communications by Internet.)
A common tool for this invasion of privacy is the use of bots, or machines that scour the Net to pick up key words and the like. But Amnesty contends this constitutes a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
To hammer home the point, and provide a potentially useful tool for Internet users wishing to keep their writing for human consumption only, Amnesty and Brazil-based agency Africa created a website that generates fonts unreadable by machines. Using the Mutant Font is simple: People wishing to post online can simply type their text into the tool, and the site will generate a code that can then be embedded directly onto a blog.
The text appears in a font that’s legible to the human eye, but has extra characteristics, like wavy lines or dots all around it, that make it hard for bots to pick up.
There are seven different types of font available, and the code itself regenerates on the Mutantfont.com site every 24 hours, creating hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of unique codes for the bots to have to sort through, theoretically leaving your content free from spying eyes. Think of it like a CAPTCHA program on steroids.
The agency tells us the Mutant Font works on standard publishing platforms like WordPress and any open website working on http or https protocols. Now, you just have to worry about your emails, phone calls, credit cards . . .