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____________________________________________________________

GUIDE TO (mostly) HARMLESS HACKING

Vol. 3 No. 8, Part 2

The Magical Mystical Crypto-Primer
____________________________________________________________

by Tim "No Sinister Nickname" Skorick <TIM_SKORICK@non-hp-usa-om7.om.hp.com>

V. WHAT'S THE EASIEST WAY TO GET INTO ALL THIS? (or "Phil Gets Paid")

A. PGP and where to get it

Awright, some of you cipherpunks knew this was coming.  By far the easiest
way to play around with cryptography is by getting your own free copy of
PGP.  PGP stands for "Pretty Good Privacy" and was created a while back by a real fun math teacher named Phil Zimmerman.  It was only command-line-based, meaning you had to do those annoying dos-like commands and switches and all that and there's wasn't any windows-type point and click.  They (him and his friends) finally came up with a windows version but then promptly sold the whole thing to a company called Network Associates.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Go Get It! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Go to http://bs.mit.edu:8001/pgp-form.html   This is the Massachusetts
Institute of Technology website where you can still get PGP version 5.0 for
Windows.  Now you could get the *new* PGP version 5.5 from
http://www.nai.com/products/security/pgpfreeware.asp  but that version will
only let you send and get messages encrypted with a Diffie-Hellman key, and
not an RSA key.  If you want to play with both, you have to get the older
freeware.

Now either way, you're going to have to fill out a questionnaire at least
promising that you're located in the USA and that you aren't going to email
a copy of the software to "Bob the UnaHacker" in some terrorist country.
I'm going to explain that in a little bit.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Okay, let me assume for the sake of easiness that you're going to be running
PGP on some flavor of windows or possibly on a mac.  Doesn't matter which, it'll work the same on most of them.

1. Install it on your computer.
2. When it asks you which key type you want to generate, start with
Diffie-Hellman just for the heck of it.
3. When it asks you for the size of key you want, just pick the biggest
(heck, ya might as well).
4. You then get to pound random data out of your keyboard and then watch
this fun little animation thingy.
5. So it finishes.  The first thing you'll notice is that they automatically
give you the keys of just about everybody who has ever worked at or near
PGP.  No biggie.  You're good to go with the cryptofun.
 

A. Playing with PGP

First things first: your clipboard is your friend.  Oh yes, make friends
with your clipboard.  Verrrrrry important.  Take him out to dinner, date his
sister, tell him he's cool.  You'll be using him quite a bit.

What makes PGP so user-friendly isn't only that it works with all these
different operating systems ... it also uses only the most idiotically
simple parts of all these operating systems.  You know what the "copy" and
"paste" functions are on most computers, right?  To "copy" you hit Ctrl-C
and it writes stuff that you selected onto your clipboard, and "paste" is
just Ctrl-V and it copies the stuff back onto your document wherever you
want.  Your clipboard is just the way-station, so where better to use
encryption and decryption functions?

So remember:

1. To mess with the data, get it onto your clipboard.
2. To look at what you did to it, move it from your clipboard onto a
document somewhere.

If you ever want to see what's on your clipboard at the moment, go to the
PGP menu and select the thing that says "Launch Associated Viewer."

The encryption fun goes like this:

1. Type some goofy simple little letter to yourself:
 
 Dear Tim, quit doing that with your eyes or they'll freeze that way.
 
2. Highlight all the text with your mouse.
3. Hit Ctrl-C. (it just copied the letter onto your clipboard)
4. Select from your PGP menu "Encrypt clipboard."
5. When it shows you all your public keys of people to write to, choose your
own.
6. Drag and drop your name onto the "recipient" list.
7. Hit "ok." (it just encrypted everything on your clipboard but left the
ciphertext there)
8. Go back to your document.
9. Click somewhere down below the plaintext you already typed.
10. Hit Ctrl-V to paste.
 
 SPLAT!
 
11. Look at that mess!

-----BEGIN PGP MESSAGE----- 
Version: PGP for Personal Privacy 5.0 
MessageID: B7gCHs7p6DU/TxZ7XFDbRklmHhdaWbBU
qANQR1DBw04Djbfak/0G+g0QEACBqiGqyQEM8itHm0VGIvPovTWQwV27ARi/kScm 
Ffk+ekdHKelizo52sAzCN35+5JvO9F+rPTjgIOnDynhflfDoMc8sFJggrU+srXPR 
MQR6X53eOmYZOBQmXcg8GiVRgl+RyN1ZlqiKPV05Edl/UjueyE6koTeQRhbcUtRq 
BPLloA26jZcklJZu1lvPvkoAjxq+OuZKWNmlXQziTGMtTtgxDmtF7zZ6wZNCV652 
CNGeIZVTMCC8ZAZ91lDq2qKq9fRzIVAyW0K0xMlMBMqTMhJCBScWr6iCCKnOwhFW 
OFRRByfOhX5bMiddET8SbL40Qfyc9lLG+xEGuOw6O5xMT5aQdWiSog4idrrBd61K 
KjUUglfeDFsni2lqGeUkt/nUcEnMhAApZoXxoKQ6wzZUipOxrMhWeQB8vLNTNmQc 
5sPZEapLEioftjh9axL+lF2Z/9XAy0+UnUsjtw7OMhxyvhZWjjQNEko8OvaW7pL0 
6eaXooE909ESkRKvkP2CATTVeTinXQk4kSH24SFwDaYxLDMJtGv88jOinKmBhOa0 
c3UGKEfRliOgxqq18M6KdJtVOOLzTeiPuKmkwtgOXnt7ky7V1cy61kiBPWjme8Hs 
vt0VvFbKitU/dVjfdnrlMKJccG/PgYFYJ/9YM4M5XpSimMNxppLgFCbum3buVnn4 
wP82aA//YRq9hkFblfdBk0bIrjOB11O5zo7MCabbkIm+xrQtVM7EZ1AV/OQw1QpM 
CvAOIHfq1THi3wWGIU9npMvDnelSsJRpWl2kde2tUDYZWELjSFjPofysFXd02fc2 
yGFG+6Eb0a3WzFwSjwVfZUhmUVRGnOVK/WIz+jIAJq08mAUoq9lE7LUblpBgZb3l 
4G5iGZ8H0yskYRzzXg5rPV3dV8fyo4pasbJ8tVnQBYZQ7t0MFdl0x/xqBm9fDevX 
vTf/atvWBF9+Vp9QepRmZ+ehATYe1N4VBknylhV4SRFar4Sja4BYWVVjYP/k1M6Q 
jkQ9jTmulHml317IH9HLdilri8cDosDX6n02QMD6lw/uiWs+ohpgLXuMCqbPLR1L 
9y5Kbj2gTdlNUs/3b5RUXRDNjtjqVFpgscgQWNUseZ10P214L6I+lqAIh3qb5gdC 
FrKb82fvJdcFwQZtam9JHooyiG11OSRrahdMf2u8C0YWrfCKIDhLEwEaY3lHtk9P 
GumJu+9cF6z2hWovHHJ5lvWlwNNOtxohSGxV/3R8F41cQXnUPkPNLxqbYzlqzoZ1 
z3Q6dyQ2gBbnjKiQm/VfDpPyKdvkWktl2iR2kyVyDwbP0u8NBQTsbkQ2r9yMPM/3 
PHQoT8ME5q3FLOgSirV1YnNQCkTCfOHGb37ZtZlVQYN00gjJVCnJWr8bh9jD19yt 
YOvixVgaym2dwCk6e+GBxKtKJ5KgpULANG/tJbY8MZjpw7IyDK6lgo1wmnn4NSjG 
JIGLXn8rk44KbT2Qo3SzZftRf8Y+1i49QQ5eEdrFmxz1vg== 
=md+y 
-----END PGP MESSAGE-----

WOW!  That digital oatmeal looks cooler every time I make it.  Heh heh heh.

More on crypto--->>


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