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(Wired)   Joe Biden shoots mouth off, accidentally creates secure email   (wired.com) divider line 27
    More: Interesting, biden, Simon Singh, Vint Cerf, communications security, Internet Society, rocket motor, do not track, plain text  
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8154 clicks; posted to Geek » on 17 Dec 2012 at 1:32 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



27 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2012-12-17 10:19:02 AM  
It's a big G-b%qlc deal.
 
2012-12-17 10:21:56 AM  
He didn't need to wire the funds immediately. Just like in the Walking Dead.

/too obscure?
 
2012-12-17 10:30:15 AM  
Huh.

Cool.

I be smarter now.
 
2012-12-17 02:03:00 PM  
I like how it blames the sale of PGP to Symantec for its failure to be adopted in mass communications.

/real reason: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags
 
2012-12-17 03:05:13 PM  
Whether creating secure e-mail or inventing the internet, these Democratic VP's are a talented bunch!
 
2012-12-17 03:10:18 PM  
It's too bad nobody uses it. It would be nice if the clients designed around it weren't just made for mutt or other Linux stuff made in the 90s.

Where's my Gmail plugin for it? For that matter, why can Gmail just say "okay, before you can set up your gmail, we need to make sure your PGP key is created."?
 
2012-12-17 03:12:53 PM  

aerojockey: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags


So you send all your snail mail on postcards so anyone can read them? When you pay a bill do you just write your credit card number and expiration date on a postcard? You don't need to be paranoid to need security.
 
2012-12-17 03:13:26 PM  

aerojockey: I like how it blames the sale of PGP to Symantec for its failure to be adopted in mass communications.

/real reason: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags


Pretty much it. Symantec has no monopoly on PGP, see GNU Privacy Guard: GPG^. Adoption is purely a matter of choice and convenience, not price or availability.
 
2012-12-17 03:18:00 PM  

Boddhisatva:
So you send all your snail mail on postcards so anyone can read them? When you pay a bill do you just write your credit card number and expiration date on a postcard? You don't need to be paranoid to need security.


Is that a bad idea? Glenn Beck told me that I can encrypt that data by writing my SSN upside down and beneath my CC info.

/Buy gold.
 
2012-12-17 03:49:52 PM  

aerojockey: I like how it blames the sale of PGP to Symantec for its failure to be adopted in mass communications.

/real reason: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags



Pretty much this.  If I need to send something sensitive (i.e. information about my business to my partner)... I don't even think of emailing it.  I call him.
 
2012-12-17 03:52:38 PM  

SineSwiper: It's too bad nobody uses it.


Except for every bank in the country, and every healthcare organization who transfers personal data to another party. And I'm sure there are many more - those are just the only two entities I deal with, and both of them use it every day, for every piece of data going out over the internet.
 
2012-12-17 04:08:38 PM  

SineSwiper: It's too bad nobody uses it. It would be nice if the clients designed around it weren't just made for mutt or other Linux stuff made in the 90s.

Where's my Gmail plugin for it? For that matter, why can Gmail just say "okay, before you can set up your gmail, we need to make sure your PGP key is created."?


"Can't?" I think you mean "won't."

In other news, I'd forgotten how Biden used to be bald.
 
2012-12-17 04:13:04 PM  
i48.tinypic.com
 
2012-12-17 04:19:06 PM  

RatOmeter: aerojockey: I like how it blames the sale of PGP to Symantec for its failure to be adopted in mass communications.

/real reason: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags

Pretty much it. Symantec has no monopoly on PGP, see GNU Privacy Guard: GPG^. Adoption is purely a matter of choice and convenience, not price or availability.


Emphasis on convenience. PGP is insanely inconvenient to actually use for normal communications. Especially if one of the parties to the communication is not a geek.
 
2012-12-17 04:37:57 PM  

FTGodWin: SineSwiper: It's too bad nobody uses it. It would be nice if the clients designed around it weren't just made for mutt or other Linux stuff made in the 90s.

Where's my Gmail plugin for it? For that matter, why can Gmail just say "okay, before you can set up your gmail, we need to make sure your PGP key is created."?

"Can't?" I think you mean "won't."


Did I say "can't"? I don't see it :)
 
2012-12-17 04:54:58 PM  
i158.photobucket.com
TOO MANY SECRETS


/He said our codes were based on an entirely different system than the Russian codes, so this box really wouldn't work on them. The only thing it would be good for is spying on Americans.
 
2012-12-17 05:30:51 PM  

ChubbyTiger: RatOmeter: aerojockey: I like how it blames the sale of PGP to Symantec for its failure to be adopted in mass communications.

/real reason: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags

Pretty much it. Symantec has no monopoly on PGP, see GNU Privacy Guard: GPG^. Adoption is purely a matter of choice and convenience, not price or availability.

Emphasis on convenience. PGP is insanely inconvenient to actually use for normal communications. Especially if one of the parties to the communication is not a geek.


Umm, that used to be the case a decade ago. These days it is a no brainer once it is set up.

http://lifehacker.com/180878/how-to-encrypt-your-email

Seriously, it should take even an inexperienced computer user perhaps 10 to 15 minutes to set up the first time they use it and after that you don't even have to do anything. You can just set it to automatically encrypt and decrypt your mail. And yes, that will work with gmail if you access it from a real e-mail client. Their are clients for Android that have PGP support built in. I don't know about iOS but I'm pretty sure there are mail clients that support it on every other platform.
 
2012-12-17 07:37:04 PM  

RatOmeter: Pretty much it. Symantec has no monopoly on PGP, see GNU Privacy Guard: GPG^. Adoption is purely a matter of choice and convenience, not price or availability.


There's also S/MIME, built into many mail clients but equally ignored by the public.
 
2012-12-17 10:14:10 PM  

Hacker_X: Seriously, it should take even an inexperienced computer user perhaps 10 to 15 minutes to set up the first time they use it and after that you don't even have to do anything. You can just set it to automatically encrypt and decrypt your mail. And yes, that will work with gmail if you access it from a real e-mail client. Their are clients for Android that have PGP support built in. I don't know about iOS but I'm pretty sure there are mail clients that support it on every other platform.


It's nice that it's available for those who actually need security for their personal email, which is almost no one. Since almost no one actually needs to protect their personal email, no one bothers to set it up, however easy it might be.

Also, you seriously overestimate the average inexperienced computer user.
 
2012-12-17 10:16:31 PM  

Boddhisatva: aerojockey: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags

So you send all your snail mail on postcards so anyone can read them? When you pay a bill do you just write your credit card number and expiration date on a postcard? You don't need to be paranoid to need security.


So you are saying I should encrypt my personal email because it's risky to write my credit card number on a postcard.

Paranoid nutbags....
 
2012-12-17 10:57:29 PM  
While not encryption, you can always use Tor email which is pretty much completely untraceable and anonymous. Of course, that doesn't help you if you put personal information in it and then the recipient decides to give it up, but that could happen with individual message encryption schemes anyway.

Tor is actually a pretty cool concept, it's a pity that it seems mostly to be used by the CP crowd.
 
2012-12-17 11:29:31 PM  

TwistedFark: Tor is actually a pretty cool concept, it's a pity that it seems mostly to be used by the CP crowd.


Dude what?

Citation needed.
 
2012-12-18 03:04:16 AM  

aerojockey: Hacker_X: Seriously, it should take even an inexperienced computer user perhaps 10 to 15 minutes to set up the first time they use it and after that you don't even have to do anything. You can just set it to automatically encrypt and decrypt your mail. And yes, that will work with gmail if you access it from a real e-mail client. Their are clients for Android that have PGP support built in. I don't know about iOS but I'm pretty sure there are mail clients that support it on every other platform.

It's nice that it's available for those who actually need security for their personal email, which is almost no one. Since almost no one actually needs to protect their personal email, no one bothers to set it up, however easy it might be.

Also, you seriously overestimate the average inexperienced computer user.


Everybody needs the security, most people just don't realize it. Normal e-mail is all sent from one server to another via plain text. It is absolutely the least secure form of electronic communications and yet most people treat it as though it was secure and transmit all kinds of personal information via it. And then they act surprised at the high rates of identity theft. But they hey, we also live in a world where people post on facebook when they are going to be out of town and then can't figure out when burglars knew when to hit the place or how they knew about all the nice stuff to steal in the house.

And no, I don't overestimate computer users AT ALL. I've done professional tech support in a call center, local on site tech support, and MANY years of tech support for friends and family. I tend to treat everybody with a computer like they are a complete idiot until proven otherwise.

When it comes to information security there are two classes of people. The paranoid, and those who weren't paranoid enough. Guess which class makes the news way more often?
 
2012-12-18 03:11:34 AM  

torusXL: TwistedFark: Tor is actually a pretty cool concept, it's a pity that it seems mostly to be used by the CP crowd.

Dude what?

Citation needed.


Yeah, the Silk Road stoners demand a recount!
 
2012-12-18 01:27:07 PM  

Hacker_X: When it comes to information security there are two classes of people. The paranoid, and those who weren't paranoid enough. Guess which class makes the news way more often?


I can't think of a single news story where a random person's personal information was compromised by a man-in-the-middle intercepting plaintext email. The only people that are in serious danger from this type of attack are people being deliberately targeted (in other words, almost nobody). Average Joe on the street is at very low risk from plaintext email, which is why Average Joe doesn't bother to encrypt his email.

Meanwhile it's fairly common for people to get credit card numbers stolen by a shady cashier. Happened to me a few weeks ago. Yet I still pay for things by credit card; in fact, I've even been to the place I suspect my old number was stolen. If plaintext email is enough risk to encrypt your personal email, then you better not ever hand a cashier a credit card.
 
2012-12-18 01:43:25 PM  

Ivo Shandor: Yeah, the Silk Road stoners demand a recount!


I think CP means something totally different than Silk Road.
 
2012-12-18 02:29:25 PM  

Boddhisatva: aerojockey: it's because most people aren't paranoid nutbags

So you send all your snail mail on postcards so anyone can read them?


Well, people do, in fact, send postcards with personal sentiments on them so I'm not sure if that's the best analogy to use.

When you pay a bill do you just write your credit card number and expiration date on a postcard? You don't need to be paranoid to need security.

No. And most people don't do credit card transactions over the internet via email, either, for the exactly same reason.

Now, I'll admit that most people probably don't have any idea of how unsecured their actual email really is, but I think that most of us who do simply prefer to take the precaution of not putting anything in email that you wouldn't put on a postcard.

The fact of the matter is that, until and unless, PGP is incorporated into popular email applications as a default (looking at you Google and Microsoft), the only thing you get out of adopting it is nominal unless you can also convince everyone you're corresponding with to do the same.

Pending that, I'll default to the basic rule of thumb: if I'm using the internet, I will assume that everyone else can see what I'm doing and will behave accordingly.
 
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