While I have my own PGP key, and plugins installed for the mail application, I don’t often encrypt e-mails, as I’m pretty much alone in having encryption setup. This is not surprising, as setting up PGP is hard: the journalists contacted by Assange did not even know what it is.

Thanks to the NSA, there has been a renewed interest in simplifying encryption, for instance Threema uses QR-codes for the public key exchange. Recently a friend sent me an invite for a new service: keybase.

The idea of Keybase is to offer tools to use PGP to associate with your identity various web properties: if you look at my profile, you will see that this website, my twitter account and my git account are associated with my account, with online, cryptographically signed, machine readable documents proving this. Keybase is also a command line that simplifies some PGP tasks, you can also host your private key in an encrypted form on their website.

While the system is still in its early stage, it is certainly a step in the right direction, extending the web of trust beyond e-mail. I suppose it is a sign of the time that all the infrastructure is in JavaScript with JSON as the serialisation format. The site is still in the invite only mode, but if you want an invite, just send me an encrypted message. You can find my contact information on this page. The keybase profile page also has facilities to encrypt a message with my public key.

One thought on “Keybase”

  1. I just signed up (thank you for the invite).
    This is simpler than GPG, but still a long way before non-geeks use it routinely…

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.