Making Democracy Legible: A Defiant Typeface: The NSA-Proof Font
“Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” —Benjamin Franklin
By Brian Merchant
At a moment when governments and corporations alike are hellbent on snooping through your personal digital messages, it'd sure be nice if there was a font their dragnets couldn't decipher. So Sang Mun tried to build one.
Sang, a recent graduate from the Rhode Island Schoold of Design (RISD), has unveiled ZXX—a "a disruptive typeface" that he says is much more difficult for data collectors like the NSA to decrypt. He's made it free to download on his website.
"The project started with a genuine question: How can we conceal our fundamental thoughts from artificial intelligences and those who deploy them?" he writes. "I decided to create a typeface that would be unreadable by text scanning software (whether used by a government agency or a lone hacker)—misdirecting information or sometimes not giving any at all. It can be applied to huge amounts of data, or to personal correspondence."