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Encrypt email reply using Outlook and Public Key in text format?

Posted on 2008-10-17
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Here's a real encrypto-noobie question. Using Outlook 2002 and received an email message requesting an encrypted reply. The senders Public Key was included in the message body as text. I see that I can send encrypted email using Outlook and that I can import certificates in the contact details in Outlook. But this message was not sent digitally signed. Is there a simple way to convert that PGP text string into a certificate file or do I need to download some encryption software that will then let me convert that public key to something usable?
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Question by:mraineynola
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sullivanr6 earned 250 total points
ID: 22746270
Outlook supports S/MIME, which is easily defeated. If you receive a sighed messages, that means the sending party has included their public key...

PGP is much different, an encryped PGP message is does NOT use S/MIME (which is a protocol, not encryption)

to view a message that has been encrypted with PGP, you'll also need PGP and the pubilc/private key pair that was used to transmit the email.

When you send an email you transmit your public key which corrosponds to your private key (which is ultimalty used to decrypte the message)

You should check out Thawte (http://www.thawte.com/secure-email/personal-email-certificates/index.html?click=DoYouNeedTo-SecureMail) , they offer free email certs that are easly imported into outlook, that will allow you to sign you messages, and send encrypted messages once you have the other parties key...

PGP is a little harder to config, but it cant be defeated in seconds (yes, almost instantly)... PGP runs in the background, and once you send an email via your email client it encrypts the message (still visable though, its all just random characters)

J
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Expert Comment

by:sullivanr6
ID: 22746283
sorry, to answer your actual question;

yes, you can use the text string sent in the email to generate the key in PGP.
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Expert Comment

by:pr0t0c0l12
ID: 22746819
You can use an encryption program.  It will be easier if you request a custom program.  This company created a good encryption program and they haven't released to the public. You can go and request that  program and they will make you one with your own algorithm.  They will give you the program and you need to install it in both ends to encrypt and decrypt on both ends.  Hope they can help you.

www.hernandezindustries.com

They have different strong programmers.

Good luck.
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Author Closing Comment

by:mraineynola
ID: 31507333
Thanks for the insight and for the link. A lot of encryption discussion assumes that I already know a lot of the jargon. This was helpful.
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