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Paperkey 1.2

Company: David Shaw
Date Added: June 12, 2013  |  Visits: 218

Paperkey

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Paperkey is a reasonable way to achieve a long term backup of OpenPGP (GnuPG, PGP, etc) keys is to print them out on paper. Due to metadata and redundancy, OpenPGP secret keys are significantly larger than just the "secret bits". In fact, the secret key contains a complete copy of the public key.<br /><br />Since the public key generally doesn't need to be backed up in this way (most people have many copies of it on various keyservers, Web pages, etc), only extracting the secret parts can be a real advantage.<br /><br />Paperkey extracts just those secret bytes and prints them. To reconstruct, you re-enter those bytes (whether by hand or via OCR), and paperkey can use them to transform your existing public key into a secret key.<br /><br />Paper? Seriously?<br /><br />The goal with paper is not secure storage. There are countless ways to store something securely. A paper backup also isn't a replacement for the usual machine readable (tape, CD-R, DVD-R, etc) backups, but rather as an if-all-else-fails method of restoring a key. Most of the storage media in use today do not have particularly good long-term (measured in years to decades) retention of data. If and when the CD-R and/or tape cassette and/or USB key and/or hard drive the secret key is stored on becomes unusable, the paper copy can be used to restore the secret key.<br /><br />What paperkey does<br /><br />Due to metadata and redundancy, OpenPGP secret keys are significantly larger than just the "secret bits". In fact, the secret key contains a complete copy of the public key. Since the public key generally doesn't need to be escrowed (most people have many copies of it on various keyservers, web pages, etc), only extracting the secret parts can be a real advantage.<br /><br />Paperkey extracts just those secret bytes and prints them. To reconstruct, you re-enter those bytes (whether by hand or via OCR) and paperkey can use them to transform your existing public key into a secret key.<br /><br />For example, the regular DSA+Elgamal secret key I just tested comes out to 1281 bytes. The

Requirements: No special requirements
Platforms: *nix, Linux
Keyword: Andor Bytes Copies Existing Extracting Extracts Keyservers Openpgp Pages Paper Paperkey Parts Public Reconstruct Secret Storage Transform
Users rating: 0/10

License: Freeware Size: 215.04 KB
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