[Enigmail] Keeping the private key in a safe place

Robert J. Hansen rjh at sixdemonbag.org
Sun Jan 22 10:48:50 PST 2012


On 1/22/2012 1:36 PM, Alex aka Soyouth wrote:
> I have another naive question, I understand that keeping the private
> key safe is of great importance. How can I copy it onto a cd that I
> will store safely at home, alongside the recovation certificate for
> the public key, in the event that my computer dies or get stolen ?

At a command prompt, type the following all on one line.  (This is
correct for Ubuntu 10.04; for other operating systems it will need to be
slightly changed.)

$ gpg --armor --export-secret-keys > $HOME/Desktop/secret_keys.asc

You can then copy the my_secret_key.asc file, along with the revocation
certificate, to a CD or a flash drive or what-have-you.  Some people
keep them in a safe place, others in a safety deposit box.  For a long
time I kept mine with my lawyer, with instructions for what to do in the
event of my death or incapacitation.

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