[PATCH] avoid publishing the GnuPG version by default

ilf ilf at zeromail.org
Mon Aug 8 00:04:30 CEST 2016

Werner Koch:
> You are right, the "Version:" has no technical meaning.
> I just pushed dkg's patch to master.

Thanks again for this. Even after the decision, I want to add a 
real-world example of why this change helps against de-anonymization:

> Both "French Maid" and Force (operating as "Nob") used the exact same 
> brand of PGP software, a free brand called GnuPG. There are different 
> brands of PGP software so it is noteworthy that both Force (operating 
> as "Nob") and "French Main" used the same brand. Not only did Force 
> and "French Maid" both use the same brand of PGP software, they also 
> both used the same outdated version of that software, 1.4.12. Version 
> 1.4.12 was released on January 2012, and was replaced with a new 
> version by December 2012, and was one of several versions of GnuPG 
> software. As such, both "French Maid" and Force (as Nob) were using 
> the specific, older version of the GnuPG software, and neither of them 
> replaced it with the other (free) version of GnuPG that came out 
> thereafter. […]
> There are also additional similarities between Force's (Nob's) and 
> "French Maid's" PGP patterns. Both "Nob" and "French Maid" left 
> certain default settings on their PGP software. For one thing, both 
> "French Maid" and Force (Nob) left a "tag" that appeared on every 
> message authored from their PGP key revealing the brand and version of 
> PGP software they were using. This is akin to, for example, leaving 
> the phrase "sent from my iPhone" on the bottom of one's emails but 
> with greater detail: it would be akin to leaving a phrase like "sent 
> from my iPhone 6 iOS 8.0.1." Leaving this "tag" on typically reveals 
> that one is dealing with a fairly inexperienced user of PGP, because 
> someone that regularly uses PGP to communicate would normally have 
> changed their settings to omit this tag.



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