“Nicholas Merrill is planning to revolutionize online privacy with a concept as simple as it is ingenious: a telecommunications provider designed from its inception to shield its customers from surveillance,” Declan McCullagh reports for CNET.

“Merrill, 39, who previously ran a New York-based Internet provider, told CNET that he’s raising funds to launch a national ‘non-profit telecommunications provider dedicated to privacy, using ubiquitous encryption’ that will sell mobile phone service and, for as little as $20 a month, Internet connectivity,” McCullagh reports. “The ISP would not merely employ every technological means at its disposal, including encryption and limited logging, to protect its customers. It would also — and in practice this is likely more important — challenge government surveillance demands of dubious legality or constitutionality.”

McCullagh reports, “His recipe for Calyx was inspired by… six years of interminable legal wrangling with the Feds: Take wireless service like that offered by Clear, which began selling 4G WiMAX broadband in 2009. Inject end-to-end encryption for Web browsing. Add e-mail that’s stored in encrypted form, so even Calyx can’t read it after it arrives. Wrap all of this up into an easy-to-use package and sell it for competitive prices, ideally around $20 a month without data caps, though perhaps prepaid for a full year.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “David G.” for the heads up.]