Key signing party details

Kevin Buley kevin at
Thu Oct 4 13:29:18 BST 2007


Steven Walter wrote:
> Hope everybody can make it to the key signing party!
> Since probably most of us have never been to one before, I wanted to go
> over what to expect, how to prepare, what to bring, etc.  The most
> important thing to bring is yourself, even if you can't bring a
> computer.  In fact, bringing a computer is almost counter-productive.
> To prepare, generate a GPG key for yourself.  If you have access to a
> linux box, this is essentially a matter of "gpg --gen-key".  Once you
> have your key, you will want to write down on a piece of paper the "Key
> ID" and the "Key Fingerprint."  The fingerprint looks like the long
> series of hex digits in my signature.  You should ideally also bring a
> photo ID.
> At the party, you'll recieve a paper table.  At the top, you'll write
> your key ID and your key fingerprint.  While eating your pizza and
> socializing, you'll go around and add other people's names, key ids, and
> fingerprints to your table.  You should check their ID, too.  Don't
> write down their info unless you are sure you of their identity (that
> is, after all, the whole point of the exercise).
> At some point during the night, there will be some talks given about the
> basics of public key cryptography (how it works and what it is good
> for), as well as practical tips on using crypto.  If you get stuck and
> can't get a key generated before the party, this part should give you
> enough info to be able to generate your own key.
> Note!  You should not at any time during the party use someone's else's
> computer.  And you probably shouldn't let anyone use your computer,
> either.  If we all trusted each other, we wouldn't need cryptography :)
> Wait to do the actual signing after the event.
> Here's a few links of suggested reading:

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