OpenPGP Smartcard Advantages

Werner Koch wk at
Tue Apr 12 09:47:40 CEST 2005

On Mon, 11 Apr 2005 10:08:10 -0700, David  said:

> 1. What are the advantages of this smartcard for storing my keys over
> other external media (especially if connected to an unsafe computer)?

Without physical access to the card it is not possible to extract the
keys.  With physical access it is hard to do do, expensive and
destroys the card.

> 2. Is the signing / encrypting done inside the card or the computer?
> (If connected to a compromised computer access to my private key can
> compromise the key itself.)

Signing and decrypting is done inside the card.

The only thing a malicious host can do is to lock the card (by sending
several times a wrong PIN) and to trick you into signing or decrypting



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