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Security, Technology

Tin foil hat optional

August 17th, 2005 by Jeff | Dump Core

I decided to try something new yesterday. While researching something else, I ended up following a link or two and wound up at the GNU Privacy Guard (or GnuPG or GPG for short) website. GnuPG is, of course, the GPL replacement for PGP, the program that brought public-key cryptography to the desktop.

I toyed around with PGP a while back, but never did much with it. At the time, my current mail client (Eudora) didn’t integrate well (i.e., at all) with PGP, and I was unwilling to upgrade my ancient version to the newest one because it had turned into “ad-ware” (which means you can use it for free if it you let it display ads, like Opera). Since I couldn’t get Eudora and PGP to talk, I kind of abandoned it all. Years later, my aging Eudora version choked on the vast volume of mail I received while away on vacation for a week (several thousand messages at least), and I was forced to migrate to something more current: Mozilla. Eventually Mozilla gave way to Thunderbird, which is what I’m happily using now. And what do you know, with Enigmail sitting in between, GnuPG and Thunderbird talk together beautifully.

Mind you, I’m not the paranoid type. I joke about triple-encrypting my story notes on a machine disconnected from any network to keep them from prying eyes, but I don’t really. (Although, now that I’ve admitted that, I actually might reconsider.) But being online, I often deal with people who are that paranoid, and it never hurts to prove that you really are who you say you are. I’ve always been mildly afraid that I’d tick someone off somewhere and they’d start impersonating me online, getting me into all sorts of libelous trouble. So better safe than sorry, I suppose.

I’ve posted my public key here on this site for anyone who really wants it. I’ll also post it somewhere on the GPF site soon (although I haven’t decided where yet). The fingerprint is included for verification. Of course, if you don’t care about such things, then don’t worry about it. It’s really there for the few of you who do.

Now… where should I put the triple-encrypted copy of the Year Eight timeline…?

Core dumps have been directed to /dev/null.


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