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Pretty Good Privacy

1. OpenPGP

OpenPGP is a standard (RFC4880) for providing secure information storage and transmission using a cryptographic system such as Symantec's PGP or the free GPG (GNU Privacy Guard) software. Uses include such things as encrypting files, whole disks encryption, encrypted emails, creation of digital signatures, etc.

This page gives information on PGP/GPG with the most common types of computer systems, namely PCs running Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, and UNIX-like systems.

1.1. Available Software

Symantec has a full range of PGP software depending on what one requires. Endpoint software for whole disks and removable storage; Email solutions; File level protection using PGP commandline; Application and Key Management software. These are generally available for Windows, Mac and Linux platforms.

GnuPG provides free commandline OpenPGP compatible tools. Graphical front-ends are available, as well as plugins to common Email clients. Available for Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, *BSD, etc.

1.2. Obtaining PGP/GPG Software

Symantec offer trial versions prior to purchasing their PGP software.

GnuPG for:

  • Windows

  • Mac OS X

  • UNIX-like OSs

    Most distributions have packages available to easily install GPG, or are already installed if using KDE or GNOME desktop environments. Refer to your Operating System's documentation for infromation on installing packages.

1.3. Using the Software

Some general examples will be available on the Information Security Best Practice Toolkit

Various tutorials exists on the Internet regarding the use of GPG, as well as documentation on Symantec's website and GnuPG.


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Written by IT Services. Latest revision 27 March 2019