A team of European security researchers has released a warning about a set of critical vulnerabilities discovered in PGP and S/Mime encryption tools that could reveal your encrypted emails in plaintext. The vulnerabilities also impact encrypted emails you sent in the past.
Sebastian Schinzel, computer security professor at Münster University of Applied Sciences, headed on to Twitter to warn users of the issue, and said that “there are currently no reliable fixes for the vulnerability.”
We’ll publish critical vulnerabilities in PGP/GPG and S/MIME email encryption on 2018-05-15 07:00 UTC. They might reveal the plaintext of encrypted emails, including encrypted emails sent in the past. #efail 1/4
— Sebastian Schinzel (@seecurity) 14 May 2018
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has also confirmed the existence of “undisclosed” vulnerabilities and recommended users to uninstall PGP and S/MIME applications until the flaws are patched. Details here
Researchers have not claimed that the flaws reside in the way encryption algorithm works; instead, the issues appear in the way email decryption tools/plugins work.
Schnizel has promised full details on Tuesday morning at 0700 UTC
Duncan is a technology professional with over 20 years experience of working in various IT roles. He has a interest in cyber security, and has a wide range of other skills in radio, electronics and telecommunications.