Email/Messaging Plan

Please bookmark this page. You will probably need to refer to it a few times over the course of a few days…

This is a general outline of the steps required to start using digital cryptography with your email. If I have asked you to read this page, it probably means we have decided to work together since it is silly and more difficult to explore these ideas alone. For now, we will limit our focus to email but the knowledge and habits you learn here should lend themselves to other applications in the future.

Some of these steps may appear to be quite abstract. In those cases, always seek out appropriate documentation. For example, the GnuPG project maintains several guides

  1. Complete my questionaire if you have not already done so.
  2. Install and configure a dedicated email client on your computer. I can not make this decision for you and fully expect you to explore your options even if it means trying out several. All I can say is to make sure you choose a free (as in “freedom”) client which supports either PGP or GnuPG.
  3. Install GNU Privacy Guard (GnuPG) on your computer.
  4. Using GnuPG, generate your keypair.
  5. Send me an email and attach a copy of your public key. DO NOT send me your private key!
  6. Be able to verify your key’s fingerprint. I will reach out to you to you to complete this verification step.
  7. Download my public key and import it into your GnuPG key ring.
  8. Configure your email client to use your GnuPG key ring. This should be easy if you’ve selected a client with built-in support as suggested above.
  9. At this point, look at an email I’ve sent you and ensure your email client can verify my digital signature. All of my emails contain this digital signature.
  10. Send me an email and make sure you digitally sign it (I can not tell you how exactly because it would depend on whatever email client you are using).

If you get this far, you will be well on your way. We will cover the rest offline or I will update this page accordingly.

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