About Encryption

03 December 2009

Briefly, two things:

1. the scientists in the UAE/Climategate thing committed the fundamental email sin: they wrote in emails things they would not say on a postcard. Well all do it. We should not. Annoying though it is, we should encrypt, because email has a sense of privacy which is utterly false.

2. encrypt is a boring word. We should broaden the field. There’s already a verb “to occult“; we could add enigmise, arcanify, and hermetograph. Or we could go a bit more classical: Gordianise, Daedalate.

Anyone got any more suggestions? I had vaticise, gnomify, and sphynxert, too, the first two turned out to mean something different and the last one seems somehow like someone with a fetish for chimerae.

6 Comments to “About Encryption”

  • Matt Keefe said on December 3rd, 2009:

    Encipher, esoterise, mystificate, polysemise, abstrusiate, recondify, or simply ‘bemuse’.

  • Nick Harkaway said on December 3rd, 2009:

    Ooh! Ooooh! Those are nice! And now I have a new one:

    Enwilder – to lose in a pathless place.

  • Doug said on December 3rd, 2009:

    One easy email encryption option is Voltage SecureMail. It uses Voltage IBE (Identity Based Encryption) which is considered the next generation of PKI. It doesn’t require certificates for the public key…just an email address.

    Voltage SecureMail has Outlook plug-ins or you can use a web interface for sending encrypted email to anyone. Messages are completely controlled by the sender and recipient in their sent folder and inbox. No messages are stored on servers.

    Recipients don’t need any special software to decrypt and read their messages. It’s much easier to use than PGP or SMIME and just as secure.

    Try it at: http://www.voltage.com/vsn

  • Nick Harkaway said on December 3rd, 2009:

    I’m approving this message on the basis that while it technically is a blatant plug, and might be spam, it’s relevant.

    See how I’m a nice person here?

  • Matt Keefe said on December 4th, 2009:

    I sometimes wonder if the greater part of all spam isn’t actually communications of great import encrypted in a surreal, satirical manner.

  • Natty said on December 4th, 2009:

    Can we make up words? Dehackify?

    Also, my bloke uses hushmail for encrypted email. Quite simple if you’ve got a (free) account, although the recipient can find it a bit tricky to retrieve the email if they *don’t* have an account. Not impossible, just a bit of a pain.

    But the government won’t allow encryption, will they? That’s why all emails have to go in plain text as well as HTML. (except those on encrypted accounts, which I assume operate on servers outside the UK)

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