Expand the "Advanced options" section. Incrase the key length to for extra NSA-proof'edness.
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Reduce the "Expiration date" to 1 year from today. Your window should look like this:. As soon as you press "Generate key," the "Enter passphrase" window will pop up. Okay, now this is important The entire PGP encryption will rest on your passphrase. So, first and foremost Pick something only you will know, and others can't guess. And once you have a passphrase selected, don't give it to other people.
Second, do not use a password, but rather a pass phrase -- a sentence. For example, "Pennstate55" is less preferable than "I graduated from Penn State in , ya heard?! Lastly, make sure your passphrase is something you can remember. Since it is long, there is a tendancy you might forget it. The consequences to that will be dire. Make sure you can remember your passphrase. Once you decide on your passphrase, type it in the "Enter passphrase" window. When everything looks good, press "OK:". You will then see a message saying, "We need to generate a lot of random bytes Open System Preferences, select the "Keyboard" pane, and go to the "Shortucts" tab.
On the left hand side, select "Services. That's it! Now, we will discuss how to use what we set up. You can encrypt anything with PGP, but most people will want to encrypt email. So, I will now take a few minutes to explain that. These steps can be transposed for any kind of encryption, from any app on your computer.
To secure an email in PGP, you will sign and encrypt the body of the message. You can just sign or just encrypt, but combining both operations will result in optimum security. Conversely, when you receive a PGP-secured email, you will decrypt and verify it. This is the "opposite" of signing and encrypting.
Press Command-F and type in the email address of the person you are sending your message to. This will search the public keyserver for your friend's PGP key:. You will receive a confirmation that your friend's key was successfully downloaded. You can press "Close:". A window will pop up, asking you who the recipient is. Select the friend's public key you just downloaded, and press "OK:". You will only need to download your friend's public key once. After that, it will always be available in your keychain until the key expires.
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With our secure message sent, the recipient will now want to unscramble it. For the sake of this step, I will pretend I am the recipient. Open your favorite text editor, and paste it:. You will immediately be prompted for your PGP passphrase. Type it in and press "OK:". Next, you can verify the signature.
You will see a message confirming the verification:. Now that you know how to sign and encrypt outgoing messages, and decrypt and verify incoming ones, let us discuss what these terms mean. Encrypt takes your secret key and the recipient's public key, and scrambles a message. The scrambled text is secure from prying eyes. The sender always encrypts. Decrypt takes an encrypted message, combined with the your secret key and the sender's public key, and descrambles it. The recipient always decrypts. Sign ing a message lets the recipient know that you the person with your email address and public key acutally authored the message.
Signing also provides additional cryptographic integrity: it ensures that no one has tampered with the encryption. The sender always signs a message. Verify ing a message is the process of analyzing a signed message, to determine if the signing is true. It is unnecessary to sign and encrypt every outgoing email. Well, then: when should you sign? And when should you encrypt? And when should you do nothing? Whenever there is confidential information -- business plans, credit card numbers, bank numbers, social security numbers, corporate strategies, etc.
I define confidential information loosely, because I'd rather sign and encrypt unnecessarily than do nothing and leak sensitive information. As for the third option, I rarely sign, but do not encrypt. Your profession may warrant radically different usage of PGP. My email address is jerzygangi gmail.
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Try sending me an encrypted, signed email. I'll reply. Launch Thunderbird and sign in to your account. Select Add-ons to open the Add-ons Manager. Type "Enigmail" into the search field in the upper, right-hand corner of the Add-ons Manager and press Enter. Click [Install] next to the entry for Enigmail to begin installing the add-on. Click Restart now to restart Thunderbird and complete the installation of Enigmail. When Thunderbird restarts, it will automatically launch the Enigmail Setup wizard. This section covers the generation of a GnuPG key pair and the configuration of Enigmail.
Make sure the I prefer a standard configuration recommended for beginners option is selected and click [Continue]. If you do, click [OK]. Otherwise, simply continue on to the Create Key screen shown in Figure 4 , below. Choose a strong passphrase and type it into the two fields shown on this screen. Note: This passphrase will be used to encrypt your private key, which is what allows you to sign emails you send and decrypt emails you receive.
It should not be shared with anyone. As such, it is important that you choose a strong passphrase and that you do not forget it. You can learn more from the Create and maintain strong passphrases guide. Click [Continue] to generate your GnuPG key pair. When Enigmail has finished generating your GnuPG key pair , it will let you know, and a Generate Revocation Certificate button will appear. You should generate a revocation certificate so you can let others know when a particular key is no longer valid.
This may happen if you:. It is particularly important that you generate a revocation certificate if you plan to upload your public key to a keyserver. There is no other way to "delete" a key once you have uploaded it, and you do not want old or compromised keys sitting around on a keyserver confusing people. Click [Create Revocation Certificate] to enter your login passphrase. Type the passphrase you chose when creating your GnuPG key pair. Click [OK] to choose a name and location for your revocation certificate.
In this example, we will put the revocation certificate in the Documents folder, but you can store it anywhere safe. Click [Save] to display Enigmail's warning about the importance of keeping your revocation certificate safe. Click [OK] to return to the Setup Wizard. Click [Continue] to complete the key generation process.
Click [Done] to exit the Setup Wizard and return to Thunderbird. You must enable Enigmail for each email account, in Thunderbird , through which you want to send and receive GnuPG encrypted email. To do so, follow the steps below. This screen allows you to set various Enigmail preferences related to email encryption. If you generated your GnuPG key pair by following the instructions in the previous section — after adding a single account to Thunderbird — that account should already be configured to work with Enigmail.
It should also be linked to the key pair you generated. If it is not, continue with Step 3 , below. If it is, you can skip to Figure 6. Click [Select Key Select the key pair you want to use for this email account. With this box checked, Enigmail is better able to encrypt email attachments, including their filenames. With this box checked, Enigmail will digitally sign all encrypted email sent through this account unless you specifically tell it not to.
Unencrypted messages will remain unsigned by default. Click [OK] to return to Thunderbird. Once you have generated your GnuPG key pair and configured your email account to work with Enigmail , you can view and manage the properties of your key pair by following the steps below. Double-click the name of your key pair to view or edit its properties. Before others can send you encrypted email, they must have a copy of your public key. You can learn more about sharing keys in Section 4. Your key fingerprint is an important part of how others can make sure that the key they have for you is actually yours.
We discuss key verification in Section 4.
How to keep your email private with PGP encryption on your Mac
If you need to change the expiration date of your GnuPG key pair , follow the steps below. This is most useful as a way to extend the expiration date, as it approaches, if you need more time to generate a new key pair and inform those with whom you communicate using encrypted email. Step 1: Click [Select action Note : The number of years shown at the bottom of the screen does not necessarily match the current expiration date.
If you click [OK] without changing anything, you may temporarily reduce the life-span of your key pair. If you would like to change the passphrase that protects your private key, follow the steps below. Click [Select action Choose a new passphrase, type it into both fields and click [OK].
Before you can start sending encrypted email messages to one another, you and your correspondents need to exchange public keys. You also need to confirm the validity of any key you receive by confirming that it really belongs to the person you believe sent it. To send a public key using Enigmail both you and your correspondent will need to perform the following steps:. Step 1: Open Thunderbird and click [Write] to write an email. Step 3: Select the key you would like to send typically the one associated with the email account you are currently using.
Step 4: Click [Send]. Your key will not appear as an attachment until just before the email is sent. An attached public key should be visible in the lower, left-hand corner of the email in which it was sent:. Hold down Control and click the attachment. Click [OK] to close the window telling you that the key s were successfully imported. Click to activate the Thunderbird menu. You should now verify that the key you have imported actually belongs to the person you believe sent it to you.
This is a process that you and your email correspondents should go through for each public key you receive. Once you verify the key, you will sign it so that GnuPG knows that it is valid. To validate your correspondent's public key, contact him using a means of communication that allows you to be absolutely certain that you are talking to the right person. In-person meetings are best, but voice and video conversations are acceptable if you are confident you can recognise his voice or appearance. This conversation does not have to be confidential, as long as you refrain from discussing sensitive topics.
You will be exchanging public keyr fingerprints, which need not be kept secret. Both you and your correspondent should verify the fingerprints of the public keys you have exchanged.
Using PGP Email Encryption on macOS
A fingerprint is a unique series of numbers and letters that identifies a GnuPG key pair. You can use the Enigmail Key Management screen to view the fingerprint of the key pairs you have generated and of the public keys you have imported. Step 3: Double-click a key pair to open the Enigmail Key Properties window. In the Key Properties window, you will be able to see the fingerprint of the selected key pair. For example, the fingerprint of ekaterina riseup. Note: Because key fingerprints are not themselves sensitive, you can easily write down the fingerprint that your correspondent reads off to you.
Then, when you have more time, You can verify that it matches the fingerprint you have for his public key using Enigmail's Key Management screen. This is also why some people print their GnuPG fingerprints on their business cards.
Once you have verified a correspondent's key, you should sign it. This will tell Enigmail to remember that you consider this key valid. Important : If you sign some else's public key, then make your signed copy of their key available publicly, it can easily expose the fact that you exchange sensitive information with that person.
To prevent this from happening by accident, always check the Local signature box when signing a correspondent's public key.
groupomorper.tk Hold down Control and click the public key you want to sign. Make sure your key pair is selected next to Key for signing. Note : Other options such as I have not checked at all may not allow you to send encrypted message to the owner of this key. And, due to a bug in Enigmail , it may be difficult to change this setting later.
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Accordingly, we recommend that you always select I have done very careful checking when signing a correspondent's public key. Check the Local signature cannot be exported box. Important : Unless you are very confident with GnuPG — and know for a fact that the owner of this public key wants your signature of his key to be public — you should check this box.
Figure 3: Entering the passphrase for your private key to sign someone else's public key. Click [OK] to sign this public key. This will tell Enigmail that you have verified the identity of its owner, which will allow you to send him encrypted email. GnuPG only protects the content of email and attachments you encrypt. The following information is never encrypted:. Finally, when you send encrypted email, rest assured that a copy — encrypted to your public key — will be placed in your Sent mail folder. Once you and your correspondent have successfully imported, validated and signed one another's public keys, you can begin exchanging encrypted messages.
In Thunderbird, click [Write] and compose an email to a recipient for whom you have a signed public key. Click Enigmail: , in the upper, left-hand corner of the compose window , just beneath the [Send] button.
Click [OK] to return the compose window. Once you have entered a To: address for which you have a verified public key , the following message should appear in the upper, right-hand corner of the window:. Click [OK] to send your encrypted and signed message. When you click on an encrypted message, Enigmail will prompt you for the passphrase to your private key so it can decrypt the message.
Type your passphrase and click [Unlock]. Enigmail will display some information at the top of the message. In the figure above, for example, " Decrypted message; Good signature from mansour " tells you that:. A : That's simple, really. Enigmail just won't work. After all, it's the GnuPG software that provides the encryption engine that Enigmail uses. Q : How many email accounts can I set up in Thunderbird?
A : As many as you like!
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