In their Privacy Note, Mozilla writes the following:

Amazon Web Services: Thunderbird uses Amazon Web Services (AWS) to host its servers and as a content delivery network. Your device’s IP address is collected as part of AWS’s server logs.

(i) If one has an Amazon account and uses Thunderbird simultaneously, does this mean that Amazon can track me?

(iii) Can Amazon read all my emails?

Thanks a lot in advance! :)

  • 1
    This is very interesting! Did Thunderbird start doing this with version 78 when it was spun out of Mozilla proper? TB78 screwed up encryption so badly I switched to the TB fork Interlink binaryoutcast.com/projects/interlink . – user10216038 Mar 15 at 17:11
  • Thanks for the suggestion! :) I don't know when TB started doing this, I just found it because I was interested about their Privacy Policy.. – Anonymous5638 Mar 15 at 17:25

The fact that someone uses AWS for their servers or storage should have no correlation to an individual's Amazon account.

Amazon already has some pretty substantial track and identify capabilities, Thunderbird should be no factor as far as Amazon is concerned.

The question boils down to:

  • Exactly what data is Thunderbird saving?
  • Can Amazon read it?
  • Would Amazon have any interest in reading it?

Amazon is certainly capable of reading AWS content, but their business model would be destroyed if it was a common practice, so outside of a legal directive it's unlikely they have any interest in reading AWS content. Automated hash checks for "Known Bad" may occur.

Apparently Thunderbird defaults to saving a disturbing (to me) amount of meta data. Nothing I've seen implies that they are saving any email, but I have not personally verified that one way or the other. There are controls to turn off sharing Thunderbird meta data, I assume they work but I no longer use Thunderbird since TB78.

Incidentally, many free email services like Gmail, AoL, and others say right in their terms of service that they read your email.


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