Security expert Schneier: e-mail is not secure in principle




Recent research would show that the usability of encrypting email with PGP severely disappointing. Security expert Bruce Schneier discusses the research on his blog. He recommends as an alternative chat apps like Signal and OTP on.

Schneier writes that he recently came to the conclusion that e-mail is not in principle to be protected, because encryption is not compatible with our use of e-mail. Here he refers to a study conducted by researchers from Brigham Young University.

The researchers have chosen to Mailvelope testing. This is a Chrome plug-in that works with popular webmail services and email encrypted with PGP, a form of end-to-end encryption. Participants in the study were twenty Gmail users who were given an hour’s time after a brief introduction to each send an encrypted e-mail. They were previously classified in pairs, whose two members were in separate rooms.

Ultimately, it was only one out of ten couples are able to send an encrypted e-mail. This should be clear according to the researchers that it is too complicated for an average person with PGP sending encrypted e-mails. One of the recommendations of the researchers was therefore to provide step by step instructions to lower the threshold. According to Schneier his crypto-chat apps like Signal compared very easy to use.



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