It's 2014. Are we there yet?

One Jsim one.jsim at
Fri Apr 11 20:16:14 CEST 2014

> In the '90 (I am old!) I was a moderated evangelist of the universal use
> of PGP (and later GPG) and public key infrastructure (web of trust) in
> order to achieve acceptable universal privacy and trust in email
> communication.
> At the time I have a good comprehension of the principles involved.
> Although I am  physics´s PhD, I have also been a computer buff since the
> '70 and almost all my work involve and has always involved a lot of
> mathematics, computers and all sort of information technologies.
> At that time most of the people,  using email, did that through an email
> client (that was usually also a news - remember usenet - client ) using
>  the POP (POP3) and latter IMAP and IMAP4. protocols.
> The idea NEVER took off, despite the internet users, at that time, were
> quite well-informed about the technicalities of the technology they used.
> I still maintain a neat pair of public-private keys, with an insanely
> complex password, and keeping the private key itself inside a password
> manager utility (keePass) together with more mundane passwords.
> (Once in a while I use my public key to encode sensitive documents, that I
> may or may not, send as email attachments).
> Nowadays most people use web-mail (gmail, yahoo, hotmail,,
> etc), not pop mail, and understand almost nothing of computer science (rare
> web-mail providers let you use POP/IMAP, most times under conditions).
> And in a very next future they will be using iOS, android, ChromeOS (all,
>  in any of the available versions) just to mention the more popular ones
> at the moment, that not even use (E)SMTP, I think.
> Facing those facts I concluded that the idea of private email for the
> masses is not feasible in the near future.
> Write a document->encrypt with public key->send as an email attachmente
> (better as compressed RAR) is the only option I found useful yet. To sign
> the document  can also be useful.
> Is useless to refer magic software in test that will solve everything, but
> is not going to materialize ever.
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