invalid gpg key revocation

Ingo Klöcker kloecker at
Wed Mar 7 21:31:11 CET 2012

On Tuesday 06 March 2012, Daniel Kahn Gillmor wrote:
> On 03/05/2012 04:36 PM, Ingo Klöcker wrote:
> > 4. He has left his laptop unlocked and unattended for a very short
> > period of time and he is using gpg-agent with a cache-ttl > 0.
> > 
> > I have verified that one can generate a revocation certificate
> > without entering a passphrase if one has previously signed
> > something (e.g. an email). So, it was probably just a very nasty
> > prank.
> as pranks involving compromise of the secret key go, this is the
> least-nasty prank i can think of.
> > Maybe gpg shouldn't use the cached signing passphrase (or any
> > cached passphrase) for generating a revocation certificate.
> But it's ok to use the cached signing passphrase for making bogus
> identity certifications?
> For signing ersatz love letters?
> What's to stop the malefactor from just querying the passphrase
> directly out of gpg-agent and absconding with both it and the secret
> key material to do whatever they want later?
> I don't think making the proposed limitation is a helpful one.

Hmm. I guess you are right. Just a minor remark: To my knowledge it is 
not possible to get the passphrase out of gpg-agent. The whole point of 
gpg-agent is that it encapsulates all operations involving the secret 
key and the passphrase in order to minimize the risk of leaks of this 
information (see

-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: not available
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 198 bytes
Desc: This is a digitally signed message part.
URL: </pipermail/attachments/20120307/902cecd6/attachment.pgp>

More information about the Gnupg-users mailing list