Alpine Privacy Policy

Alpine takes your privacy very seriously. Please read the following statements to understand how Alpine protects your privacy.

Alpine stores information about servers that you access to send and receive email, contacts in our addressbook, and S/MIME certificates and keys, either, in the same computer you run Alpine from, or in an IMAP server of your choice. Alpine only uses this information for purposes of sending, reading, displaying, and composing email.

In addition, if you read USENET newsgoups, Alpine stores in your own computer the information of which newsgroups you have read and the last message that you deleted from the list of messages. It uses this information to display the list of posts that are available for you to read, and their status (new, unseen, etc.)

You can save your configuration data, including your addressbook, and S/MIME certificates and keys in an IMAP server. You could do this so that you can access Alpine from different locations with only one configuration setup. If you choose to do this, your privacy is treated according to the Privacy Policy terms of the owner of the IMAP server you used to save this data. Alpine does not encourage you or forces you to do this.

Under no circumstance any of your configuration information, or data, will be shared with, or sold to, anyone. Alpine does not facilitate sharing that information with anyone, including Alpine developers.

Your version of Alpine might have been compiled with debug support and therefore logs information about your use of Alpine. This information might either be saved on local files, or it could be accessed from the main screen of Alpine by pressing "J" This information includes, among other things, servers you visited, messages you read, keystrokes you pressed, and messages you sent. If this information is saved in a local file, this file can be found in the same directory where your configuration is located. If your version of Alpine was compiled with debug support, you can avoid the creation of these files by starting Alpine with the command line option "-d 0". Under no circumstances are these debug files shared with anyone, and are created so that you can debug any issues you have with Alpine by reading a log of your session.

Once you login to an account in an email server, Alpine will only read your data for the purposes of displaying it to you, saving it in a folder of your choice, use it to start a new message (by forwarding, bouncing, or replying). This data will be treated confidentially, and will only be shown to you. In addition, Alpine might record these activities in your debug files as explained above. None of this information is ever shared with any third parties. Alpine will only read information in folders that is necessasry to display a message and under no circumstance it will look for external information (such as credit card numbers, phone numbers, etc.) as these are not needed to display a message, or the index screen, or the addressbook.

Alpine uses information about SMTP servers or local Mail User Agents (such as Sendmail) to send email on your behalf. Any version of Alpine released since January 1, 2020, does not send email to contact its developers or any third party, without you starting such communication through the normal process of composing new messages in Alpine. If you are using a version released previous to January 2020, but after January 1, 2012, you might have been asked to be counted by sending an anonymous email to an address which does not exist anymore. The information obtained during that time was not sold, nor shared with anyone, and was only used to count users by counting messages, and no effort was spent in analyzing or using that information was ever done. These counting messages were deleted, and not available anymore. If you are using a version of Alpine released before 2012, that information went to the University of Washington, and is subject to their privacy policy, which is not covered by this privacy policy.

Alpine treats all configuration information that is necessary to run Alpine as confidential and privileged, and is not shared with or sold to anyone.

We may update this policy at any time. Changes will be posted in this page and announced in public mailing lists and newsgroups. You are responsible for reading the new terms and understanding them.

Should you have any questions, concerns, or comments about this privacy policy, please contact me by email to the address