Try the ZXX font: the NSA (and Google et al) can’t easily read it

Some developers out there are working on ways to defeat the spying, prying eyes of Big Government and others who try to read our digital communications. One of those is Sang Mun at the Walker Art Center. His font, titled ZXX, is very difficult for machines to read. Why not give it a try for your email and other documents that you don’t want the NSA, Google, Yahoo and any other machine readers, to scan and analyze. Download it at ZXX.

I wonder if the the folks at Big Government Inc realize that people take actions to evade their spying. I imagine they realize this. It certainly means that the techniques must be much more sophisticated that simply collecting all of the world’s electronic communications and trying to analyze them at a gigantic data warehouse in Utah!

About Mike
A resident of the ā€œ30 square miles surrounded by reality,ā€ I spend most of my time teaching economics and statistics to undergraduate students. I enjoy, naturally, economics and business, but also science (I was once an astronomical observatory assistant), politics, photography, food, travel and sports. Madison has grown quite a bit since 1978 when Governor Lee Dreyfus made that remark. According to Wikipedia, Madison is 67.3 square miles of land and 16 square miles of water. Visit for one of my favorite views of the isthmus. Or, why not come visit us!

15 Responses to Try the ZXX font: the NSA (and Google et al) can’t easily read it

  1. very cool

  2. trutherator says:

    Best blowback is to ostracize the people who build this up. Got a Congressman in the family? Confront the guy! Fonts they’ll get around.

    • Mike says:

      Good point! And, people need to reject at the voting booth these politicians who vote to rob us of our rights. Thanks for commenting!

  3. Bart says:

    If you have something to hide, it will draw attention to whoever uses it. Just like the lonesome man in the middle of the woods who does not like city stress or has the means to live in the ‘society prescribed conditions’. We claim he must be a criminal because he is secluded from ‘society’. I doubt that ‘unreadable fonts’ will work the way the maker intended. Heck it could easily be an invention by NSA to track any downloaders.

    • Mike says:

      Good comments. These days that old X-files saying seems to apply more than ever. Trust No One. At the same time, trust is what lets a modern run. We’re in for some hard times, I fear.

  4. Pingback: How to give the NSA the finger « Olduvaiblog: Musings on the coming collapse

  5. Pingback: NSA began domestic spying prior to 9/11 attacks « Dr Alf's Blog

  6. tiffany267 says:

    Thanks for the post. Nevertheless, ever the skeptic, I can’t imagine that the feds aren’t on top of this already. If it’s openly downloadable and free, why on earth wouldn’t they already be tracking it? I just don’t think that downloading a new font is going to protect me in my information transmissions. To be quite honest, I don’t think there is any limit to the power of the police state, and I’m inclined to throw my hands up and figure I’ll end up secretly hauled off to indefinite detention.

    • Mike says:

      Ya, I’d think they’d have this covered, too. On the other hand, every day is another demonstration of the incompetence of Big Government. Thanks for adding your thoughts. :-)

    • Cheryl says:

      Beyond the tracking of it, it’s not enough to simply use a different font. You have to also convert the information to an image format and send only that image format over the internet. Remember, a character displayed on screen or print is only a representation, via a font, of a byte – a integer between 0 & 255 – an “A” will always be 65, and an “a” always 97. It’s not like the NSA is printing out information from the Internet and then using OCR technology to see what it says. They intercept it in electronic form and use an algorithm to determine what needs to be looked at more closely. And BTW, if your communication is determined to be something they need to look at very closely, they’ll have someone open up the images and read them.

      But if it makes you feel better, by all means write your stuff in this font and then take a screenshot and distribute that and feel smug that you’re smarter than the NSA.

      • Mike says:

        Thanks for commenting!

  7. Paul Schmidt says:

    Downloaded the file but when I try to install it, Windows 7 says that the file does not appear to be a valid font.

    • Mike says:

      I extracted them from the .zip file, right clicked on the one I wanted and then left clicked on the “install” option. That worked for me on Windows 7.

      • Sourabh Devani says:

        No, it’s not working in Windows 7

  8. ivymike1152 says:

    Reblogged this on Ivy Mike Cafe and commented:
    Awesome. Download it.

%d bloggers like this: