key generation: email-address necessary?

Doug Barton dougb at
Sat Feb 27 20:21:47 CET 2010

On 02/26/10 10:34, Martin Bretschneider wrote:
> Hi,
> I want to recreate my GnuPG keys. My question is if I can omit the email 
> address? Since I do not want my email addresses to appear on the 
> keyservers because of spammers and so on. 

1. It's been repeated many times on the list that those who have
investigated the issue have determined that the amount of spam to
addresses harvested from keyservers is negligible at worst.

2. You're far more likely to get spam to an address by using it to post
to a public mailing list.

3. The whole idea of taking any kind of steps to hide your address from
spammers has been overtaken by events. They will get your address. They
will send you spam. That's just how the world works now, and pretending
that you can do anything about it by "hiding" your e-mail address is
just foolishness.

4. The proper place to deal with spam is on the receiving end. First
your mail server, and second your MUA. "Smart clients" like Thunderbird
have built in spam fighting. Unix command line tools have access to
things like bogofilter.

5. And finally something germane to the list, the amount of trouble you
will cause for yourself and others by omitting your e-mail address will
far exceed any benefit you may get from "hiding" your address from the

hope this helps,



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