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The Best Way to Send and Receive End-to-End Encrypted Emails

The Best Way to Send and Receive End-to-End Encrypted Emails

March 18, 2016Swati Khandelwal
How many of you know the fact that your daily e-mails are passaged through a deep espionage filter? This was unknown until the whistleblower Edward Snowden broke all the surveillance secrets, which made privacy and security important for all Internet users than ever before. I often get asked "How to send encrypted email?", "How can I protect my emails from prying eyes?" and "Which is the best encrypted email service?". Although, there are a number of encryption tools that offers encrypted email service to ensure that no one can see what you are sending to someone else. One such tool to send encrypted emails is PGP ( Pretty Good Privacy ), an encryption tool designed to protect users' emails from snooping. However, setting up a PGP Environment for non-tech users is quite a difficult task, so more than 97% of the Internet users, including government officials, are still communicating via unencrypted email services i.e. Gmail, Ya
Apple macOS Bug Reveals Cache of Sensitive Data from Encrypted Drives

Apple macOS Bug Reveals Cache of Sensitive Data from Encrypted Drives

June 18, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Security researchers are warning of almost a decade old issue with one of the Apple's macOS feature which was designed for users' convenience but is potentially exposing the contents of files stored on password-protected encrypted drives. Earlier this month, security researcher Wojciech Regula from SecuRing published a blog post , about the "Quick Look" feature in macOS that helps users preview photos, documents files, or a folder without opening them. Regula explained that Quick Look feature generates thumbnails for each file/folder, giving users a convenient way to evaluate files before they open them. However, these cached thumbnails are stored on the computer's non-encrypted hard drive, at a known and unprotected location, even if those files/folders belong to an encrypted container, eventually revealing some of the content stored on encrypted drives. Patrick Wardle, chief research officer at Digital Security, equally shared the concern, saying tha
Here's How eFail Attack Works Against PGP and S/MIME Encrypted Emails

Here's How eFail Attack Works Against PGP and S/MIME Encrypted Emails

May 14, 2018Swati Khandelwal
With a heavy heart, security researchers have early released the details of a set of vulnerabilities discovered in email clients for two widely used email encryption standards—PGP and S/MIME—after someone leaked their paper on the Internet, which was actually scheduled for tomorrow. PGP and S/MIME are popular end-to-end encryption standards used to encrypt emails in a way that no one, not even the company, government, or cyber criminals, can spy on your communication. Before explaining how the vulnerability works, it should be noted that the flaw doesn't reside in the email encryption standards itself; instead, it affects a few email clients/plugins that incorrectly implemented the technologies. Dubbed eFail by the researchers, the vulnerabilities, as described in our previous early-warning article , could allow potential attackers to decrypt the content of your end-to-end encrypted emails in plaintext, even for messages sent in the past. According to the paper released
Signal 2.0 — Free iPhone App for Encrypted Calls and Texts

Signal 2.0 — Free iPhone App for Encrypted Calls and Texts

March 03, 2015Wang Wei
An open source software group, Open Whisper Systems , has announced the release of Signal 2.0 — the second version of its free and open source messaging application for iPhone and iPad users. Signal  app is specifically designed to make secure and easy-to-use encrypted voice calling. But that's what the application was providing in its previous release introduced last July with  Signal 1.0 . Apple's iMessage also provides encrypted communication, but it was challenged by security researchers in 2013, revealing that  Apple controls the key infrastructure  and could, in turn, be compelled to change a key anytime they want, and read the content of your messages. But there was no way to send secure messages from an iPhone iMessage to an Android phone, or vice versa, unless you signed up for a monthly subscription plan and got the person you wanted to communicate with to sign up for it too. GAME CHANGER: SIGNAL 2.0 Signal 2.0 lets you send end-to-end encrypted messages to us
Buggy Microsoft Outlook Sending Encrypted S/MIME Emails With Plaintext Copy For Months

Buggy Microsoft Outlook Sending Encrypted S/MIME Emails With Plaintext Copy For Months

October 12, 2017Swati Khandelwal
Beware, If you are using S/MIME protocol over Microsoft Outlook to encrypt your email communication, you need to watch out. From at least last 6 months, your messages were being sent in both encrypted and unencrypted forms, exposing all your secret and sensitive communications to potential eavesdroppers. S/MIME, or Secure/Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions, is an end-to-end encryption protocol—based on public-key cryptography and works just like SSL connections—that enables users to send digitally signed and encrypted messages. According to a security advisory published by SEC Consult earlier this week, a severe bug (CVE-2017-11776) in Microsoft Outlook email client causes S/MIME encrypted emails to be sent with their unencrypted versions attached. When Outlook users make use of S/MIME to encrypt their messages and format their emails as plain text, the vulnerability allows the seemingly encrypted emails to be sent in both encrypted as well as human-readable clear text f
Researchers Find New Hack to Read Content Of Password Protected PDF Files

Researchers Find New Hack to Read Content Of Password Protected PDF Files

October 01, 2019Mohit Kumar
Looking for ways to unlock and read the content of an encrypted PDF without knowing the password? Well, that's now possible, sort of—thanks to a novel set of attacking techniques that could allow attackers to access the entire content of a password-protected or encrypted PDF file, but under some specific circumstances. Dubbed PDFex , the new set of techniques includes two classes of attacks that take advantage of security weaknesses in the standard encryption protection built into the Portable Document Format, better known as PDF. To be noted, the PDFex attacks don't allow an attacker to know or remove the password for an encrypted PDF; instead, enable attackers to remotely exfiltrate content once a legitimate user opens that document. In other words, PDFex allows attackers to modify a protected PDF document, without having the corresponding password, in a way that when opened by someone with the right password, the file will automatically send out a copy of the decry
Peerio — End-to-End Encrypted Secure Messenger and File Sharing App

Peerio — End-to-End Encrypted Secure Messenger and File Sharing App

January 14, 2015Mohit Kumar
On one end, where governments of countries like U.K is criticizing end-to-end encryption and considering to ban the encrypted communication apps like Snapchat, CryptoCat, WhatsApp and Apple's iMessage. On the other hand, the Internet community has come up with a new and rather more secure encrypted communication app. Dubbed Peerio , an " encrypted productivity suite " designed to offer much more usable alternative to PGP email and file encryption, so that every individual user and business can encrypt everything from Instant Messages to online file storage. Peerio, released on Wednesday, is designed by 24-year-old Nadim Kobeissi – the creator of the end-to-end encrypted group messaging app Cryptocat and the encrypted file-sharing app MiniLock . " With Peerio everything you share or communicate with your team is secured with state-of-the-art encryption , and it's as easy as using Gmail. You don't need to learn to use it, " Kobeissi told Wired. &quo
Cryptocat offers End-to End Encryption For Facebook Messenger

Cryptocat offers End-to End Encryption For Facebook Messenger

May 15, 2014Swati Khandelwal
It's an era of Mass Surveillance, where Encryption has become more important today for all of us than any other time in the History. But the trouble is that Crypto programs are too hard for Non-Internet-Savvy to implement and use. Time is loudly announcing the need to switch to some alternatives that provide end-to-end encryption for communication between two devices in order to keep your personal data away from NSA's prying eyes and respect your Privacy . But, many services, including Facebook's messaging application, don't support encryption and therefore are weak in providing security of our online data, which could result in data breach either by cyber criminals or by our own Government under surveillance programs. Because Facebook's messaging application doesn't support end-to-end encryption, an Open-source and most popular crypto chat-encryption application called 'Cryptocat' has made it possible to chat with your Facebook friends and rel
Australia Passes Anti-Encryption Bill—Here's Everything You Need To Know

Australia Passes Anti-Encryption Bill—Here's Everything You Need To Know

December 07, 2018Swati Khandelwal
Australia's House of Representatives has finally passed the "Telecommunications Assistance and Access Bill 2018," also known as the Anti-Encryption Bill , on Thursday that would now allow law enforcement to force Google, Facebook, WhatsApp, Signal, and other tech giants to help them access encrypted communications. The Australian government argues the new legislation is important for national security and an essential tool to help law enforcement and security agencies fight serious offenses such as crime, terrorist attacks, drug trafficking, smuggling, and sexual exploitation of children. Since the bill had support from both major parties (the Coalition and Labor), the upper house could vote in support of the Assistance and Access Bill to make it law, which is expected to come into effect immediately during the next session of parliament in early 2019. Although the new legislation does not properly clarify specifics around the potential power that the Assistance
Twitter is Testing End-to-End Encrypted Direct Messages

Twitter is Testing End-to-End Encrypted Direct Messages

May 08, 2018Mohit Kumar
Twitter has been adopting new trends at a snail's pace. But it's better to be late than never. Since 2013 people were speculating that Twitter will bring end-to-end encryption to its direct messages, and finally almost 5 years after the encryption era began, the company is now testing an end-to-end encrypted messaging on Twitter. Dubbed " Secret Conversation ," the feature has been spotted in the latest version of Android application package (APK) for Twitter by Jane Manchun Wong, a computer science student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. End-to-end encryption allows users to send and receive messages in a way that no one, be it an FBI agent with a warrant, hacker or even the service itself, can intercept them. However, it seems like the Secret Conversation feature has currently been available only to a small number of users for testing. So, if you are one of those lucky ones, you will be able to send end-to-end encrypted Secret Conversation thro
Dutch Police Seize Another Company that Sells PGP-Encrypted Blackberry Phones

Dutch Police Seize Another Company that Sells PGP-Encrypted Blackberry Phones

May 11, 2017Swati Khandelwal
The Dutch police arrested four suspects on Tuesday on suspicion of money laundering and involvement in selling custom encrypted BlackBerry and Android smartphones to criminals. The Dutch National High Tech Crime Unit (NHTCU), dedicated team within the Dutch National Police Agency aims to investigate advanced forms of cyber crimes, carried out investigation and found that the phone brand "PGPsafe" was selling customized BlackBerry and Android smartphones with the secure PGP-encrypted network to the "possible criminal end users." PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) is an open source end-to-end encryption standard that can be used to cryptographically sign emails, documents, files, or entire disk partitions in order to protect them from being spied on. Selling custom security-focused encrypted phones does not involve any crime itself, but Dutch police have discovered evidence, which indicates over the years such phones had been sold to organized criminals involved in
How Dutch Police Decrypted BlackBerry PGP Messages For Criminal Investigation

How Dutch Police Decrypted BlackBerry PGP Messages For Criminal Investigation

March 10, 2017Swati Khandelwal
The Dutch police have managed to decrypt a number of PGP-encrypted messages sent by criminals using their custom security-focused PGP BlackBerry phones and identified several criminals in an ongoing investigation. PGP, or Pretty Good Privacy, an open source end-to-end encryption standard that can be used to cryptographically sign emails, files, documents, or entire disk partitions in order to protect them from being spied on. You'll be surprised to know how the police actually decrypted those PGP messages. In April last year, the Dutch Police arrested a 36-year-old man on suspicion of money laundering and involvement in selling customized BlackBerry Phones with the secure PGP-encrypted network to criminals that were involved in organized crimes. At the time, the police also seized a server belonging to Ennetcom, the company owned by Danny Manupassa, which contains data of end-to-end encrypted communications belong to a large number of criminal groups. Later, in Januar
WhatsApp Backdoor allows Hackers to Intercept and Read Your Encrypted Messages

WhatsApp Backdoor allows Hackers to Intercept and Read Your Encrypted Messages

January 13, 2017Mohit Kumar
Important Update — Most Security Experts argued, " It's not a backdoor, rather it's a feature ," but none of them denied the fact that, if required, WhatsApp or a hacker can intercept your end-to-end encrypted chats. Read detailed explanation on arguments in my latest article. Most people believe that end-to-end encryption is the ultimate way to protect your secret communication from snooping, and it does, but it can be intercepted if not implemented correctly. After introducing " end-to-end encryption by default " last year, WhatsApp has become the world's largest secure messaging platform with over a billion users worldwide. But if you think your conversations are completely secure in a way that no one, not even Facebook, the company that owned WhatsApp, can intercept your messages then you are highly mistaken, just like most of us and it's not a new concept. Here's the kick: End-to-end encrypted messaging service, such as WhatsApp and Te
How to Start Secret Conversations on Facebook Messenger

How to Start Secret Conversations on Facebook Messenger

October 06, 2016Swati Khandelwal
If you are looking for ways to start a secret conversation on Facebook Messenger with your friends, then you are at the right place. In this article, I am going to tell you about Facebook Messenger's new end-to-end encrypted chat feature, dubbed " Secret Conversations ," but before that, know why do you need your chats to be end-to-end encrypted? Your online privacy is under threat not only from online marketers and hackers but also from governments. Just yesterday, it was revealed that Yahoo secretly built hacking tool to scan all of its customers' incoming emails for US intelligence officials. So, to hide your personal life online from prying eyes, you need end-to-end encryption that allows you to send and receive messages in a way that no one, including the feds with a warrant, hackers and not even the company itself, can intercept or read them. Last year, WhatsApp became the largest end-to-end encrypted messaging network in history by rolling out anoth
Encrypted Smartphone Network Seized by Dutch Police for Criminal Investigation

Encrypted Smartphone Network Seized by Dutch Police for Criminal Investigation

April 21, 2016Mohit Kumar
On Tuesday, the Dutch Police arrested a 36-year-old man, Danny Manupassa , on suspicion of money laundering and involvement in selling encrypted smartphones to criminals. Manupassa owns a company called Ennetcom , which provides customized Blackberry Phones with the secure PGP-encrypted network. Reportedly, Ennetcom sold nearly 19,000 encrypted cell phones at 1500 euros each in last few years. Police have seized Ennetcom servers based in the Netherlands and Canada and pulled them offline. The seized servers contain data of encrypted communications belong to a large number of criminals. According to a press release , the investigation is ongoing and seized data from the servers will be analyzed soon. Police believe this operation would result in collecting evidence required for solving numerous ongoing investigations involving drug trafficking, assassinations, and other serious crimes. Moreover, Canadian Police is also involved in this investigation and surprisingly, i
ProtonMail: 'NSA-Proof' End-to-End Encrypted Email Service

ProtonMail: 'NSA-Proof' End-to-End Encrypted Email Service

May 26, 2014Swati Khandelwal
The Edward Snowden revelations triggered a large-scale movement worldwide towards deploying encryption across the Internet for secure services, which is something the government agencies like NSA and GCHQ have targeted repeatedly, as exemplified by abruptly shutting down Lavabit , a Texas-based Encrypted Email Service. In response, a group of young developers at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) has launched a new email service which offers end-to-end encryption and securing communications that could put an end to government snooping and will keep away our personal data from prying eyes. PROTONMAIL - AN END-to-END ENCRYPTED EMAIL This new encrypted email service, called ProtonMail is a super-secure email service created in collaboration with the scientists from Harvard, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the European research lab CERN. ProtonMail offers a user-friendly experience with full "end-to-end" encryption . It encrypts the data on the browser
Police Arrested Hundreds of Criminals After Hacking Into Encrypted Chat Network

Police Arrested Hundreds of Criminals After Hacking Into Encrypted Chat Network

July 03, 2020Swati Khandelwal
In a joint operation, European and British law enforcement agencies recently arrested hundreds of alleged drug dealers and other criminals after infiltrating into a global network of an encrypted chatting app that was used to plot drug deals, money laundering, extortions, and even murders. Dubbed EncroChat , the top-secret encrypted communication app comes pre-installed on a customized Android-based handset with GPS, camera, and microphone functionality removed for anonymity and security. EncroChat phones aim to securely exchange data and messages with pre-loaded apps for secure instant messaging, VOIP calling, self destruct messages, and includes a 'kill code' functionality to let users remotely wipe complete data in times of trouble. The handset and its services, which cost around £1,500 for a six-month subscription, had 60,000 users worldwide and approximately 10,000 users in the United Kingdom. "EncroChat phones were presented to customers as guaranteeing pe
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