Russian train derailed and crashed on dirt road

Can you tell us about who you are and what you do?

BOAK is a revolutionary organization of anarchists from the former Soviet Union, mostly Russia but other countries as well.

We are working on a social revolution to change the political system in Russia according to anarcho-communist views. We are growing our organization and spreading our ideals and methods.

Right now, our ideals are leading us to fight against the war in Ukraine, attacking the Russian war machine and the State as a whole, and helping other people to do the same.

How are you fighting against the war in Ukraine right now?

  • We attacked with fire some cell towers near the Ukrainian border that were used by the Russian military for coordination.

  • We sabotaged the railroad tracks leading to missile and artillery warehouses in the Moscow and Vladimir regions.

  • We are working with sympathizers and created a solidarity fund to create more groups and spread our struggle.

    Sympathizers attacked military recruiting centers, railroad electricity boxes, and railroad tracks to stop military cargo transportation.

How do you use Tails in your struggle and why it is important?

We have been using Tails for about 7 years.

We use Tails, to:

  • Communicate securely inside our organization.

  • Research targets and methods on how to attack them.

  • Communicate with sympathizers.

  • Manage our public communication channels.

Tails is very important to protect us from repression:

  • By being anonymous on the Internet, so we cannot be tracked through our Internet service providers or digital traces.

  • By not leaving any compromising information on our devices, like files that could be found by the police in case our members are arrested.

Tails also has many apps that are useful for our struggle, so we don't need any other OS. It saves time and resources, for example when editing photos or videos, encrypting communications, deleting metadata, deleting files securely, using cryptocurrencies, writing articles, managing our finances, and so on.

What are the 3 things that you like the most in Tails?

The 3 most important tools for us are:

  • Tor that is fully integrated for web browsing, email, messaging, and so on. There's no risk of exposing ourselves.

  • Kleopatra and PGP in general, to encrypt our messages.

  • Tails Installer that makes it very easy to create another Tails if you already have one.

The 3 most important aspects of Tails for us are:

  • Security

    Tails keeps us safe.

  • Multifunctionality

    Tails is almost all-in-one for us with no need for other devices or tools. If Tails doesn't include a tool, you can add it yourself.

  • User-friendly

    New people can start working with Tails rather easily. They don't need to be "hackers". Sometimes, we even teach people how to use Tails over email.

What are the things that you don't like or that are missing in Tails and we should improve?

There isn't anything that we don't like, only minor issues:

  • We have problems with Wi-Fi drivers on some devices and need to install them separately. It would be good to support more hardware.

  • We miss some tools like more messengers (Telegram) and crypto wallets (Monero). It's a minor issue because we can add them manually.

  • We would like to be able to copy an entire Tails USB stick including the Persistent Storage. This can be useful when you need to add new members and give them access to keys.

Which applications are missing and how do you install them right now?

  • The Telegram messenger

    We download and use an AppImage right now. We have to restore the user profile directory by copy-paste after restarting Tails.

  • The Feather Monero wallet

    Thank you for recommending it. It works very well!

  • The Pitivi video editor

    We used to use the OpenShot AppImage, but we changed to installing Pitivi using the Additional Software feature.

How can Tails supporters help you in your fight against the Russian regime?

  • Pressure your own government to fight against Putin's regime, or at least not support it.

  • Spread our ideals, as we believe that our struggle is part of an international struggle of all people of Earth against oppression.

  • Donate to our revolutionary fund.

What is the biggest hurdle to Tails being adopted by more activists in Russia?

We believe that the biggest hurdle is underestimating the danger of repression.

Until recently lots of people thought that, if they didn't do anything against the law, they would be safe and would not need tools like Tails.

Lots of people find it too complicated to use Tails and Tor. They only use a VPN, which puts their lives and freedom at risk, unfortunately.

Tor seems to be a threat to the Russian State, because Tor is being banned in Russia and you need to use bridges. This also makes using Tor more complicated.

But in Russia, the law only works in the interest of the State and the people in power. Actually, this is a universal problem, but it's more acute right now in Russia.

You can consider yourself a law abiding citizen if you want, but if you are against the people in power, you are in danger.

And if you want to stay free and continue to act, you need to protect yourself.

Lately, a lot more people are beginning to understand this, and we believe that the popularity of tools like Tails will grow.