SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Pat Romanski, Sean Houghton, Glenn Rossman, Ignacio M. Llorente, Xenia von Wedel

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Giegerich & Partner: Improved Integration of Email Encryption in Company Setting

Some companies worry about introducing email encryption, due to administration costs and lack of acceptance by the users. This was confirmed by about 30 corporate participants at the first Business Cryptoparty held by Giegerich & Partner and the QGroup in April. With the updated 3.3 version of the gpg4o Add-In, Giegerich & Partner has taken this into consideration and, while improving performance, usability and security, has introduced numerous features which facilitate integration into a corporate environment. gpg4o is based on OpenPGP – one of the most widely used and safest cryptographic techniques worldwide* - and has already had success in over 45 countries.

More control for admins, less steps for the user

gpg4o is now simplified for business user and can be remotely configured via Microsoft Policy Manager, i.e. unnecessary functions can be switched on/off for relevant user depending on the security level. Depending on user groups, a large range of functions can be set via remote access e.g. handling key material (create, delete, import, sign etc.), the option to send public keys as well as handling key servers, pass phrases and withdrawal certificates to withdraw a key.

The new version includes many innovations which simplify gpg4o. The software now has a simplified trust setting (always trust) and imports public keys automatically upon request. Often users value the seemingly small adjustments. Many users asked to able to hide the send options tool bar, which we implemented with version 3.3.

User acceptance is increased by conversion of the help function in gpg4o 3.3. Handbook, internet resources and contact details for support or sales can now be accessed with a single button.

Security was also optimised in this new version: gpg4o will now immediately report any improper changes to the underlying encryption library. The possibility of adjusting the storage period of pass phrases reduces the risk of abuse when the user is not logged in to the server and improves usability since users don't have to immediately re-enter pass phrases.

An overview of selected new features is available: http://www.giepa.de/produkte/gpg4o/gpg4o-3-3/ or on our blog: http://www.giepa.de/roadmap-gpg4o-3-3/

* Source: gpg4o is based on the OpenPGP standard (58 % of encrypted data traffic worldwide; source: © Prof. Norbert Pohlmann, Institute for Internet Security – if(is), Westphalia University of Applied Sciences;

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