Leak to the Observer

The Texas Observer has been holding powerful interests accountable for more than six decades. We’ve reported on the broken guardianship system, the Texas comptroller meddling in endangered species research, and disparities in the state environmental agency’s enforcement program, among others. None of those stories would have been possible without whistleblowers.

If you are in possession of data, documentation, recordings, photos, or videos that reveal threats or harm to the public interest and require investigation, we want to talk to you. If you are accessing this page on a work computer, phone, or tablet, please come back when you are using a personal device.

Whistleblowers may face personal and professional ramifications as a result of their actions. Before contacting us, we recommend that you take the time to understand that providing information to reporters could lead to legal, physical, economic, and psychological consequences. We also recommend that you assess risks to your digital security before making efforts to contact us. The Texas Observer cannot 100 percent guarantee your safety or security, but we will make every effort possible to maintain your confidentiality. 

Finally, please be patient. Investigations take time and could last months or even years depending on the information you provide. 

Here are four secure ways you can reach us while protecting your identity. Please do not send pitches, press releases, feedback, or letters to the editor through these channels.

Email us

Send us a secure email at [email protected]. Protonmail offers end-to-end encrypted email addresses and allows tipsters to send communications and files to the Observer securely. Using a Protonmail address to contact us will keep all correspondence encrypted even if intercepted. Visit Protonmail here to sign up for a free account

Message us on Signal

Signal is a free, end-to-end encrypted messaging and voice call app available for download for iPhone and Android users. Through Signal, your message is encrypted when it is sent from your cell phone to a recipient and if intercepted cannot be decoded. In some cases, just the fact that you’re contacting a reporter might get you in trouble. We urge you to use your personal phone for communications with us. We also encourage you to read about how to safely configure the app for secure use here. 

Texas Observer’s general Signal number: (512) 782-4689

If you prefer, you can also reach our reporters at their Signal numbers on their staff pages.

Message us on Threema

Like Signal, Threema offers end-to-end encrypted messaging and calls for smart phones. What makes the app different than Signal is that Threema does not require a phone number or email to register. Threema creates a numerical ID to replace the need for phone numbers or emails that allows users to communicate anonymously. The app costs $2.99 to download and can be easily transferred between devices. 

Texas Observer’s Threema ID: 6EYA8KMS

Send us postal mail

A low-tech, but very secure way to send us documents is snail mail. Authorities aren’t allowed to open mail in transit without a warrant. Send us a letter or any records you have to the address below without a return address. You can address it to “Texas Observer” or a specific reporter.

Texas Observer
P.O. Box #6421
Austin, Texas
78762

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