ShazzleMail aims to re-invent email by making it surveillance-resistant

Martin Brinkmann
Feb 20, 2014

Emails are probably one of the easiest data types that third-parties can monitor. There are plenty of reasons for that, from being stored on third-party servers to the lack of proper encryption. And to top it all, even if emails are encrypted the metadata is usually not.

The creators of ShazzleMail have created a system that they say does away with all current email privacy issues. One of the core differences to standard email solutions is that the email client is also the server.

While that sounds complicated at first, it is not in this case as everything is handled in the background for you. All you need to do is create an email account, or multiple ones, to get started.

This means that every user of ShazzleMail is also operating a server that is being used to send and retrieve emails.

A central registry is being used to provide senders with information about recipients. If the recipient is also a user of ShazzleMail, an encrypted connection is created between the sender's and receiver's device. If the receiving user is not online, the email is not sent until that happens.

This does away with the storing of emails on third-party servers, but does mean that emails are only exchanged if both parties are online at the same time.

If the recipient of the email is not a member of the ShazzleMail network, a url link is sent instead using standard non-secure emails. A click on the link opens an SSL connection between the recipient's computer and the sender's device, so that the information are transmitted via an encrypted channel.

ShazzleMail is available for major app platforms such as Apple's iOS and Google's Android platform, but also as desktop clients for Windows and Macintosh systems.

In addition, it is possible to setup email clients such as Thunderbird once an account has been created. Note that the ShazzleMail client needs to run on the system as well for that to happen, as you won't be able to use the service otherwise.

The team focuses on mobile first and foremost, and there are several reasons for that, but the most important one is that mobile devices -- especially smartphones --  tend to be online all the time, or the majority of time while PCs or Macs are not usually.

The desktop client is pretty basic but sufficient. The main advantage that it offers over the mail apps is that you can send attachments using it, while that does not seem possible if you are sending emails using the applications.

Lets recap how ShazzleMail differs from traditional email services

  • Email is only stored on your devices and on recipient devices, but nowhere else.
  • Emails are only transmitted in encrypted form when both sender and recipient are online. And even if the recipient is not using ShazzleMail, a direct connection is ensured.
  • There are not any encryption keys that the email provider can pass over to authorities.


The system is well-thought out but it is too early to tell if it is really secure. A security audit is needed to verify that. I was not able find information about the encryption that the service uses on the services website, or information about the central registry that is being used to link senders to recipients.

The apps are limited in terms of what you can send. While you can add text to emails and basic formatting, you cannot add any file attachments.

With all that said, it is highly advised to be careful when using the service. While that does not mean that you should not use it, it means that you need to be aware of those issues.


ShazzleMail is something that I'll be keeping an eye on to see how it evolves over time.  A security audit above everything else would certainly help the application's popularity.

Now Read: Postbox email client review


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  1. JMGG said on January 19, 2012 at 8:25 am

    You said that Outlook isn’t your main email client, so which is your main one?

    1. BalaC said on January 19, 2012 at 9:42 am

      I think its thunderbird

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on January 19, 2012 at 10:15 am

      It is Mozilla Thunderbird.

  2. Salaam said on September 24, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Awesome! This actually solved my problem… what a stupid bug.

  3. Claud said on December 19, 2012 at 2:08 am

    If this is the same bug that I’ve encountered, there may be another fix: (1) hover over open Outlook item in Taskbar, cursor up to hover over Outlook window item, and right-click; (2) this should give you Restore / Move / Size / Minimize / Maximize — choose Move or Size; (3) use your cursor keys, going arbitrarily N/S/E/W, to try to move or size the Outlook window back into view. Basically, the app behaves as though it were open in a 0x0 window, or at a location that’s offscreen, and this will frequently work to resize and/or move the window. Don’t forget to close while resized/moved, so that Outlook remembers the size/position for next time.

    1. Lynda said on February 12, 2013 at 3:37 pm

      THANK YOU Claude!!! I could get the main window to launch but could not get any other message window to show on the desktop. You are my hero!!!!

    2. Chad said on November 20, 2018 at 4:24 pm

      Solved my issue! 6 years later and this is still problem…

    3. Ivan X said on January 21, 2021 at 4:50 pm

      Fantastic. Thank you. Size did the trick.

  4. Andrew said on October 26, 2013 at 7:06 am

    This solved my Outlook problem, too. Thank you. :)

  5. Charles said on December 7, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    Thank you so much, this started happening to me today and was causing big problems. You are a life saver, I hope I can help you in some way some day.

  6. garth said on November 7, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    You are a god – thank you!

  7. Faisal said on February 9, 2015 at 10:09 am

    thanks a lot…. work like charm.. :-)

  8. Simon said on March 24, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    Yah…thanks Claude. I’ve been having the same problem and tried all the suggestions…your solution was the answer. It had resized itself to a 0/0 box. Cheers

  9. Olu said on April 14, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    Excellent post. This had me baffled even trying to accurately describe the problem. This fixed it for me.
    Thank you

  10. Coenig said on July 23, 2015 at 7:36 am

    Thanks a lot for the article. Don’t know why it happenend, don’t know how it got fixed, but it was really annoying and now it works :-)

  11. Fali said on January 20, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    Thanks a lot. I was facing this issue from past 3 week. I tried everything but no resolution. The issue was happening intermittently and mainly when I was changing the display of screen ( as i use 2 monitors). The only option i had was to do system restore. But thanks to you.

    1. MIki said on January 10, 2019 at 11:54 am

      I’ve been tried to sole this problem for 12hours. Your comment about changing the display of screen helped me a lot!! Thanks!!

  12. Christina said on January 20, 2016 at 6:14 pm

    Thank you…don’t know why this happened but your instructions helped me fix it. Running Windows 10 and office pro 2007

  13. Oz said on July 22, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    Great tip! Thanks!

  14. Tracy said on September 1, 2016 at 4:48 pm

    Worked for me, too – thank you!!!

  15. shawn said on September 9, 2016 at 10:25 am

    It’s Worked for me, too
    thank you very much!

  16. Jari said on October 31, 2016 at 11:53 am

    I had a similar issue with Outlook 2013 on Windows 10 and this helped me to fix it. Thank you very much!

  17. Michel H said on November 30, 2016 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you so much. Solved!
    Considering you published this in 2012, incredible not been debugged by Microsoft.
    Thank you again. M

  18. Ziad Bitar said on January 9, 2017 at 2:00 am

    This problem was faced by only one user logging to TS 2008 r2 using outlook 2010.The issue was resolved.


  19. Anonymous said on February 15, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    Great tip. Thank you!!!! If it helps, I had to use the Control Key and the arrow keys at the same time to bring my window back into view. Worked like a charm.

  20. Rochelle said on March 6, 2017 at 11:59 am

    Thank you, this worked !!!!

  21. anom1234 said on May 20, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    Man, you are a fucking god. Thanks a lot, what an annoying bug!!

  22. JC said on October 12, 2020 at 2:14 pm

    Awesome, this post solved the issue. Many thanks!

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