It is a free and open-source, cross-platform FTP application that: secure file transfer — and it makes an old-fashioned protocol cool again, according to a recent blog post.
Started about 21 years ago — and downloaded by millions every year — FileZilla remains “committed to their role in liberating technology by making it accessible, open, and also secure,” according to the blog post. But it also explains how FileZilla has bolstered that security through a partnership with internet freedom nonprofit, the Open Technology Fund (or “OTF”):
Over the past year, FileZilla has used OTF support to perform two activities that enhanced and ensured the security of their tools. The first was the integration of FileZilla Server with Let’s Encrypt, a free, automated and open source certificate authority that ensures secure communication between the two endpoints sending or receiving a file through FileZilla…. Second, FileZilla performed a penetration test, a service provided by OTF’s Red Team Lab. A team of independent researchers tried to force access to the FileZilla server to see if they could gain control. These researchers were highly skilled and the testing was extensive. The team running the test found only very minor security vulnerabilities that FileZilla was able to fix immediately. As a result of this process, anyone who wants to use the FileZilla software can rest assured that it has been examined by a third party and found to be safe….
FileZilla respects users’ confidentiality: they do not track your behavior or sell your data to other companies. Although they have advertisements on their website, they are placed exactly like advertisements in a newspaper. No one knows that you are reading the ads, or that you have decided to call or connect to the advertised website. The ad is simply linked to the web page, without any underlying tracking…. . “Our mission has not changed in more than 20 years: design, develop, maintain and improve free tools to transfer files securely, easily and reliably,” said Tim Kosse, FileZilla Lead Developer. This decision was a political decision by FileZilla, to always preserve the freedom of their tools and of their users. “We’re not your typical commercial open source company that starts out doing things for free and then closes down over time to make money,” said Roberto Galoppini, FileZilla Director of Strategy. “While you may not see FileZilla listed on the NYSE [New York Stock Exchange] soon the freedom of our tools will never be questioned…”
[I]If you work in an industry that requires the secure transfer of sensitive files, or if you simply have personal photos or videos that you want to keep confidential, using proprietary platforms to share or store them can expose your information… FileZilla offers an alternative that is secure and private. Their tools are developed by a team deeply invested in protecting user confidentiality, and liberating technology is at the heart of their work and decision making….
At the same time, projects like FileZilla remind us that there is a global community of technologists, activists, programmers, bloggers, journalists, software developers and conscious internet users who make internet freedom a reality and daily practice. Supporting, experimenting with and using free and open source tools, such as the FileZilla client and server, allows us to divest ourselves from the capitalist pursuit of corporate control over technology and uncontrolled surveillance of our data.
Instead, we can align ourselves with an alternative, parallel narrative created by a community of resistance based on principles of cooperation, solidarity, commons, and openness.
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