Re: Thunderbird and end-to-end email encryption – should this be a priority?

Mark Banner mbanner at
Tue Aug 25 12:33:56 UTC 2015

On 25/08/2015 11:11, Dave Koelmeyer wrote:
> Hi Kent,
> On 25/08/15 21:31, R Kent James wrote:
>> This is the text from a blog post today on the Thunderbird blog:
>> See 
>> Should this be a focus for Thunderbird development?
> Insofar as it being a critical differentiating feature for 
> Thunderbird, I think so yes. There is likely a niche to be made here 
> for particularly sensitive industries where endpoint encryption in an 
> email client would be a powerful selling point (something I am pushing 
> myself with Thunderbird and prospective clients).
Personally, I think if you're going to chase email encryption, I think 
you should look at getting wider industry adoption or improvements, not 
just a niche feature for Thunderbird. That way, it improves it for 
everyone, and will gain a wider user population - and is more likely to 
be successful. Many people don't use Thunderbird, and if they can't 
receive encrypted emails (and read them), then it'll reduce the 
usefulness for a lot of users, possibly to the extent they don't bother 
using it at all.

> Having said that, Enigmail's setup wizard is actually pretty 
> straightforward (albeit generally still needs a little technical 
> know-how and explanation to get up and running for non-technical users). 
The fact this needs technical know-how and co-operation at both ends has 
really been the limiting factor IMHO. I think this is the bit that 
really needs solving, or making simple in a very easy to understand way.

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