About Me

I am Jake Winters, also known by my pseudonym "Inference", a security researcher based in United Kingdom.
I am the founder, lead developer, and administrator, of Inferencium.
All opinions are my own, and are not necessarily shared with projects or people I am affiliated with.

I write about my research and experience in cybersecurity and also physical security. Most of my postings are security-related, but I occasionally post about other aspects of my life.

I am an open source advocate for the preservation and modifiability of source code. I believe source code should be considered human knowledge as much as past knowledge and teachings were; it is how modern humanity survives and runs.
Source code being modifiable allows it to be adapted for use by anyone, whether to add features, harden it for increased security and/or privacy, or provide accessibility for disabled users.
I am also a modular design advocate for the ability to securely and robustly make changes to hardware and software without the entire system being affected.

I run multiple XMPP channels; a directory of channels can be found on the directory webpage.

If you wish to contact me for any reason, you can use my contact methods.

Is it GNU/Linux or Just Linux?

It's just Linux. GNU is completely unrelated to Linux, which is a kernel developed by Linus Torvalds. Linux can be used entirely without GNU software in userspace, and the kernel can be compiled without the use of GNU tools. Just because GNU tools were used to initally develop and compile the kernel, and were initially the only available tools for userspace, does not make this true today, and it never made GNU a part of Linux itself at any point of time. Where are all of the other forward-slashes for every other piece of software on your Linux-based system which makes it just as usable? If you're using "GNU/Linux", you should be using more than a single forward-slash when there is more to your system than only GNU.


I care about upstreaming and sharing code, strongly preferring licenses which have high license compatibility in order to permit sharing code with as many other projects as possible; for this reason, permissive licenses are my preferred choice, while avoiding copyleft licenses and other licenses which place restrictions on how my code may be used, and prevent me from including important proprietary code, such as firmware, which can patch security vulnerabilities, privacy issues, and stability issues. All of my code is and will be permissively licensed unless specific circumstances make it impractical or infeasible to do so. My goal is to share code which has the least amount of restrictions as possible, to allow wider propagation of my code and allow more use cases and possibilities, as well as ensuring proprietary code, whenever required, is permitted to be included.

My preferred licenses and rationale for using them are below; any licenses not listed are chosen on a case-by-case basis.

ISO 5962:2021 is used for licensing, in the format SPDX-License-Identifier: <license>; see the SPDX license list for the full list of available licenses under this standard.


BSD 3-Clause License

SPDX-License-Identifier: BSD-3-Clause

Type: Permissive

BSD 3-Clause License is a highly permissive license which allows content licensed under it to be used in any way, whether in source or binary form, and allows sublicensing under a different license, with the only restrictions being the original copyright notice must be kept in order to attribute the original creator of the licensed content, and the name of the project and/or its contributors may not be used to endorse or promote products derived from the original project.

GNU General Public License v2.0

SPDX-License-Identifier: GPL-2.0-only

Type: Copyleft

GNU General Public License v2.0 is a strong copyleft license which restricts use of content licensed under it by requiring all source code of the content to be publicly available, making binary-only form and inclusion of proprietary code impossible, requiring all derivatives to be licensed under the same license (allowing sublicensing under only newer GPL licenses if GPL-2.0-or-later is specified in the SPDX license identifier), and requiring the original copyright notice to be kept in order to attribute the original creator of the licensed content.
Due to the restrictive and invasive nature of this license, it is avoided unless such restrictions would be beneficial to my code; whenever this is the case, the GNU General Public License v2.0 will be used, rather than the more restrictive GNU General Public License v3.0, and relicensing derivatives under the GNU General Public License v3.0 will be disallowed.


Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International

SPDX-License-Identifier: CC-BY-4.0

Type: Permissive

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International is a highly permissive license which allows content licensed under it to be used in any way, in any medium, with the only restriction being the original copyright notice must be kept in order to attribute the original creator of the licensed content.

Do I Distinguish Between Open-source and Free Software?

No. If code is not released under an open-source license and places restrictions on how the code may be used, it is either source-available (if viewing the code is permitted) or proprietary. "Free software" only causes confusion and exists to push an ideology by a specific group of people. If software isn't "free", it's not open-source, either.


This list contains the policies and practices of my services.

My policies and practices are heavily security- and privacy-focused, with improvements made on an ongoing basis as new technologies, protocols, and software become available.





Type Hardware Description Source model
Google Pixel

Google Pixel devices are the best Android devices available on the market for security and privacy.

They allow locking the bootloader with a custom Android Verified Boot (AVB) key in order to preserve security and privacy features when installing a custom operating system, such as verified boot which verifies that the OS has not been corrupted or tampered with, and rollback protection which prevents an adversary from rolling back the OS or firmware version to a previous version with known security vulnerabilities.

They also include a hardware security module (Titan M2, improving on the previous generation Titan M) which is extremely resistant to both remote and physical attacks due to being completely isolated from the rest of the system, including the operating system. Titan M2 ensures that the device cannot be remotely compromised by requiring the side buttons of the device to be physically pressed for some sensitive operations. Titan M2 also takes the role of Android StrongBox Keymaster, a hardware-backed Keystore containing sensitive user keys which are unavailable to the OS or apps running on it without authorisation from Titan M2 itself. Insider attack resistance ensures that Titan M2 firmware can be flashed only if the user PIN/password is already known, making it impossible to backdoor the device without already knowing these secrets.

Google Pixel device kernels are compiled with forward-edge control-flow integrity and backward-edge control-flow integrity to prevent code reuse attacks against the kernel. MAC address randomisation is implemented well, along with minimal probe requests and randomised initial sequence numbers.

Google releases guaranteed monthly security updates, ensuring Google Pixel devices are up-to-date and quickly protected against security vulnerabilities.

Pixel 6-series and 7-series devices are a large improvement over the already very secure and private previous generation Pixel devices. They replace ARM-based Titan M with RISC-V-based Titan M2, reducing trust by removing ARM from the equation. Titan M2 is more resiliant to attacks than Titan M, and is AVA_VAN.5 certified, the highest level of vulnerability assessment. Google's in-house Tensor System-on-Chip includes Tensor Security Core, further improving device security.

Pixel 8-series includes Armv9's Memory Tagging Extension, which dramatically increases device security by eliminating up to 95% of all security issues caused by memory-unsafety.


Pixel 4a (5G), Pixel 5, and Pixel 5a, are supported for a minimum of 3 years from launch.

Pixel 6-series, Pixel 7-series, Pixel Fold, and Pixel Tablet, are supported for a minimum of 5 years from launch.

Pixel 8-series is supported for a minimum of 7 years from launch, putting it on the same support level as Apple; Google have even surpassed Apple in this regard, as Apple does not commit to a support timeframe for their devices.



Type Software Description Source model
Operating system
Gentoo Linux

Gentoo Linux is a highly modular, source-based, Linux-based operating system which allows vast customisation to tailor the operating system to suit your specific needs. There are many advantages to such an operating system, with the most notable being the ability to optimise the software for security, privacy, performance, or power usage; however, there are effectively unlimited other use cases, or a combination of multiple use cases.

I have focused on security hardening and privacy hardening, placing performance below those aspects, although my system is still very performant. Some of the hardening I apply includes stack protection, signed integer overflow trapping, and GrapheneOS' hardened_malloc memory allocator.

You can find my Gentoo Linux configurations in my configuration respository.

Web browser

Chromium is a highly secure web browser which is often ahead of other web browsers in security aspects. It has a dedicated security team and a very impressive security brag sheet. Chromium's security features include a strong multi-layer sandbox, strong site isolation, Binding Integrity memory hardening, and control-flow integrity (CFI).



Type Software Description Source model
Operating system


GrapheneOS is a security-hardened, privacy-hardened, secure-by-default, Android-based operating system which implements extensive, systemic security and privacy hardening to the Android Open Source Project used as its base codebase. Its hardening includes closing gaps for apps to access sensitive system information, a secure app spawning feature which avoids sharing address space layout and other secrets AOSP's default Zygote app spawning model would share, hardened kernel, hardened memory allocator (hardened_malloc) to protect against common memory corruption vulnerabilities, hardened Bionic standard C library, stricter SELinux policies, and local and remote hardware-backed attestation (Auditor) to ensure the OS has not been corrupted or tampered with.

GrapheneOS only supports high security and well-supported devices which receive full support from their manufacturers, including firmware updates, long support lifecycles, secure hardware, and overall high security practices.

For an extensive list of features GrapheneOS provides, visit its official features list which provides extensive documentation.

Web browser

Vanadium is a security-hardened, privacy-hardened Chromium-based web browser which utilises GrapheneOS' operating system hardening to implement stronger defenses to the already very secure Chromium web browser. Its hardening alongside Chromium's base security features includes disabling JavaScript just-in-time (JIT) compilation by default, stubbing out the battery status API to prevent abuse of it, and always-on Incognito mode as an option.

Vanadium's source code, including its Chromium patch-set, can be found in its official repository.


Molly is a security-hardened, privacy-hardened Signal client which hardens Signal by using a variety of unique features, allowing locking the database when not in use, and utilising Android StrongBox to protect user keys using the device's hardware security module.

Molly is available in 2 flavours:

  • Molly, which includes the same proprietary Google code as Signal to support more features.
  • Molly-FOSS, which removes the proprietary Google code to provide an entirely open-source client.



Conversations is a well-designed Android XMPP client which serves as the de facto XMPP reference client and has great usability.



For a curated list of music I enjoy, visit my music page.