Thunderbird 78.2.1 and 81.0b2 milestone

Wayne vseerror at lehigh.edu
Mon Aug 31 12:54:02 UTC 2020


On 8/30/20 10:41 PM, Mike Dewhirst wrote:
> In general the concept of e2ee is good. HOWEVER it solves a 
> non-existent problem. Email has been insecure from day 1 and everyone 
> knows this and uses other mechanisms for keeping real secrets. As your 
> article carefully points out it is potentially dangerous to make 
> mistakes and as it also points out and indeed demonstrates, 
> understanding e2ee for email is costly in terms of brain-space and 
> therefore new users will avoid it.
>
> ...
>
> If I was calling the shots I would focus on email signing and forget 
> e2ee. Encrypted email will always have a tiny market dominated by 
> paranoid IT departments who probably don't know Thunderbird exists.

Perhaps you are correct about signing.

However, the reasons for pursuing e2ee for version 78, initiated last 
year, were compelling. The author of the enigmail add-on was not 
interested in making the add-on work for 78 and it was felt that it 
would be technically difficult to do so (plus probably requiring 
additional annual work), BUT was willing to help us transition users 
from engimail to e2ee (and has been a key contributor in the 
transition),  much of the engimail code was reused, we had just hired a 
security developer with the expertise who could make it happen, and 
encryption has been a long desired capability.  Pretty much a no brainer.

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