yossman.net - user accounts - gnupg usage assistance (draft).
document URL: http://www.yossman.net/support/gnupg.html
document last revised: yossman/2004-02-27.

gnupg - encryption and authentication.

gnupg can be used for many purposes, the two most common probably being encryption of files, including emails, and authenticating who you are talking to. this is done through the generation, and trading, set of 'keys', to people you trust. this lets both parties, you and them, know that there is a higher degree of certainty that you both are who you say you are.

this same set of 'keys' can be used to encrypt and decrypt files, either for safe storage or for sending to someone over an insecure channel, like most email over the internet. trading passwords, and other sensitive pieces of personal or corporate information, via the public internet email system, should be considered a serious problem.

You can get started using gnupg by generating a private/public key pair with:

yossman.net> gpg --gen-key

This creates a '.gnupg' directory for storing your keyrings.

Importing someones public key to your keyring is done with:

yossman.net> gpg --import 

Encrypting information to someone on your public key can be done like:
yossman.net> gpg -a -e -r  

yossman.net> gpg -d 

end document.
original document first appeared on the internet in february 2004, as http://yossman.net/support/gnupg.html.
original document creation by yossarian holmberg (yossman at yossman.net), with assistance from corban riley (criley at uwaterloo.ca).