Best practices for multiple e-mail addresses

Adrian 'Dagurashibanipal' von Bidder avbidder at
Sat Oct 11 00:20:45 CEST 2003

On Friday 10 October 2003 18:25, Joel Konkle-Parker wrote:
> I have three distinct e-mail addresses: work, home, and another
> business. What's the best practice for keeping a key for each address?
> One key with multiple addresses in it (i.e. a key for me as a person)? A
> separate key for each address (i.e. a key for each of work/home/business
> as a unit)?

It depends.

I have several email addresses, too, but I use them mainly to receive mail - I 
almost always send with the one I'm using here (yes, this is for both work 
and private email atm). So I have decided against using multiple digital IDs 
entirely for now, I only use my one key with its one email address.

If you have strictly separate work and private email addresses, I would 
recommend that you also have separate keys: it's different 'roles', you are a 
different person if you send mail from word vs. as a private person.

I would use multiple userids if you have some email addresses where the 
distinction is not in the function/role: an 'old' and a 'new' address, for 

If you decide for having multiple keys, there is the next questions: do you 
cross-sign the keys, or do you make a certification key which sends the email 
keys (for instance with only the name on the cert key, without email addrs). 
Or do you want to keep the identities separate entirely, to make a point that 
those keys are really different, and that perhaps somebody might want to 
trust one without trusting the other (for whatever reasons).

Just my €.02 (or rather CHF 0.02)

-- vbi

Available for key signing in Zürich and Basel, Switzerland
                     (what's this? Look at
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