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What are the best Android privacy apps?

Looking to upgrade your messaging, email, and browsing applications to more private alternatives? We’ll list and review the top privacy apps for Android.
Row of apps for email, communication, and tracker blocking.

Categories and use cases

In this blog, we’ll cover the best privacy apps on Android. From browsers to email applications, privacy is a critical need in online software today. Protect your communications, internet use, collaboration, and other personal data that is typically bought and sold across the internet. We’ll also cover some great Android security tips, such as using 2FA on your services and keeping your Android version up to date.These tips are intended to be simple and easy to follow, and every piece of software mentioned is widely used, respected, and trusted by the privacy community. Read on for more!

Private browsers on Android

Privacy-focused web browsers have been downloaded and used by hundreds of millions of Android users. From additional security features, such as phishing protection, to tracker blocking, a privacy-focused web browser is a must for anyone looking to ramp up privacy protections on their Android phone.

Firefox Focus
: Firefox Focus is available on the Play Store with over 10 million downloads to date. In addition to a minimalist design and high speed browsing, Firefox Focus advertises a built-in ad blocker and website tracker protection - basic privacy features that all private web browsers on this list offer. Note that Firefox Focus is also open-source, another trust-building feature for security and privacy apps.
Brave Browser: Brave Browser on Android is another very popular privacy-focused web browser, with over 100 million downloads. In addition to blocking trackers and increasing security, Brave supports in-app firewall, VPN (Virtual Private Network), and crypto wallet functionality, giving it key additional security features you may typically find in a separate security app. Brave also is supposedly planning to introduce Tor browsing to the mobile app for a truly private, decentralized browsing experience; however, this feature does not exist yet today.DuckDuckGo: DuckDuckGo is quite a popular search engine and web browser on Android. Beyond tracker protection and private search, DuckDuckGo offers an email proxying service wherein emails sent to your address are instead routed through DuckDuckGo, ideally stripping the emails of trackers and sending privately to your inbox. We highly recommend using this service alongside Skiff Mail, which proxies or blocks remote content to ensure total privacy.DuckDuckGo’s Android app also advertises app privacy protection wherein network requests from other apps (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) are routed through DuckDuckGo for increased privacy.

Private email on Android

For a private email and calendar solution, we highly recommend using Skiff Mail and Skiff Calendar, which offer web, Android, and iOS apps. Skiff products include numerous security features and settings, such as:
  • End-to-end encryption of all sensitive data: Skiff Mail offers end-to-end encryption of email subjects and content, which means that only you and recipients can access message content. Email providers and everyone else, including Skiff, cannot access this data. Gmail, Microsoft Outlook, Hotmail, and other email services do not offer end-to-end encryption.
  • Tracking protection or blocking: Skiff proxies all remote content by default, keeping your device information, IP address, and operating system free from spyware. You can also block all remote content for a fully private experience.
  • Two-factor authentication: Setting up 2FA is a natural choice for anyone security-inclined. On Skiff, this ensures that you enter in a one-time password before signing in to your account.
  • Password protection and watermarking: Skiff offers password protection for documents, files, and PDFs, as well as watermarks for any notes and documents created on Skiff. This adds additional security and protection to your work. Skiff’s Pages product allows for real-time collaboration and notes to be shared internally or externally.
Below, we’ll share more on Skiff paid plans, which offer even more storage, custom email domains, and features for families, teams, and companies. To sign up, visit

Best VPNs for Android

Private messaging apps on AndroidPrivate messaging apps today offer significantly greater online privacy protections than traditional SMS messages. From end-to-end encryption to private voice and video calls, we strongly recommend using one of the choices below as a secure replacement for text messages. Many Android users are also migrating from Android Messenger or WhatsApp to the options below as they offer better metadata privacy.Signal Private Messenger: Signal is one of the host highly regarded secure messaging products in the world. From full end-to-end encryption with forward secrecy and almost no metadata collection to video and calling capabilities, Signal is a wonderful choice for communicating effectively while maintaining good mobile security.Signal is available on the Google Play Store, with over 100 million downloads to date. The company also offers an Android APK that can be directly installed on mobile devices, which is helpful for users who are not using the Play store or who have chosen to Degoogle their devices and operating system.Session: Session is another popular end-to-end encrypted messenger that collects no metadata or personal data and uses a decentralized architecture to send private messages. Unlike Signal, Session does not even require a phone number to sign up and send messages.Session is also available on the Play Store with over a million downloads. The product also allows you to create group chats, send voice messages, and share files or attachments.

Using Skiff for private email, calendar, notes, and file storage

Skiff’s privacy-first ecosystem of Mail, Calendar, Pages, and Drive products offers an entire suite for leveling up your digital security. If you’re using an Android device for work, you may consider onboarding your entire team to Skiff’s product suite, including a custom domain for email, aliases for different departments, and shared teams or drives.For more on paid plans, check out the table below on numerous additional features for you, your family, or your company.
Drive storage10 GB100 GB1 TB
Sending messages (limit)200/dayUnlimitedUnlimited
Folders and labels5UnlimitedUnlimited
Custom signatures
Auto reply
Schedule or undo send
Email + doc text search
E2EE link sharing
Document limitUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited aliases41015
Custom domains0215
Workspace collaborators66Unlimited
Doc version history24 hoursUnlimitedUnlimited
Skiff also offers credits for startups and for nonprofits.

Replace your big tech work suite with Skiff

Skiff enables using a full workspace for all communication and collaboration. In addition to Skiff Mail, which is covered above, Skiff offers three additional end-to-end encrypted apps:Skiff Pages—Skiff’s note-taking and sharing enables real-time collaboration and creating an end-to-end encrypted workspace for teams, wikis, job boards, and notes. You can also enable decentralized storage on the InterPlanetary Filesystem as well.Skiff Drive—Skiff Drive is a full Google Drive, Box, or Dropbox solution with end-to-end encryption of all document data and titles. Files can also be stored on IPFS with end-to-end encryption, enabling access to your encrypted data outside of Skiff.Skiff Calendar—Skiff Calendar end-to-end encrypts your calendar event titles, external attendees, notes, video conferencing details and more, keeping your schedule and activity private to you.For more information on Skiff products, check out the white paper, open-source Skiff Mail code, and the blog for more security tips and products.

Conclusion and more tips

We hope the tips above helped you find more privacy-first alternatives for communicating and browsing the web. Ultimately, there are great products that work well, have great user interfaces, and protect user privacy at all costs.If you’re looking for more guides, we also wrote a blog on the best end-to-end encrypted note taking apps, the best end-to-end encrypted file storage products, and the most private web browsers. If you’re also looking for a password manager or encrypted collaboration tools, we wrote up guides as well.For Apple security tips, check out our additional blog on the best iOS, iPhone, and Mac security and privacy practices.

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