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Tiger Envelopes: Overview

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Ordinary email is like sending all your messages on postcards. Anyone can read it. Encryption is the answer, but it's always been so much hassle that even security pros usually don't use it. What we need is an easy way to protect our email from snoops.

That's what Tiger Envelopes is. You just read and write mail, but now it's private. You don't change your mail client. There are no extra steps. The first unprotected message is the last.

Everyone can run Envelopes. It supports Windows and Linux. Installation is super simple. With one click it sets up your encryption and configures Windows Outlook, Windows Outlook Express, Thunderbird, or KMail.

Technical overview

Envelopes is a personal mail proxy that automatically encrypts and decrypts. It uses standard OpenPGP encryption programs such as GPG, Bouncy Castle, and PGP. The Open Crypto Engine, also developed by Tiger Privacy, is an API that talks to these different packages. It's all open source so anyone can verify that there's no spyware, no malware, and no central control.

If you're really short on time and just want the buzzwords, Tiger Envelopes gives you opportunistic, layered encryption with p2p public key distribution.

Opportunistic    When two people use Envelopes, the encryption just happens. All you have to do is keep using your email as usual. Your mail is safe beginning with the first reply. The first unprotected message is the last.

In case you encounter one of those rare and brave people who use traditional email encryption, Envelopes also works with older OpenPGP mail encryption packages that don't support opportunistic encryption.

Layered    Envelopes includes the Bouncy Castle encryption package so there's nothing else you have to install. But if you already have GPG or PGP, Envelopes will encrypt your messages in layers. Each protective layer is provided by a different encryption program. To crack your message, an attacker has to crack all the layers. A vulnerability in one encryption program doesn't compromise the message. If any of them works, your message is safe.

P2P    Tiger uses a peer to peer key distribution protocol with no centralized server. That means there's no complicated Public Key Infrastructure to set up and maintain, and no central tracking or control. Envelopes creates keys for you and distributes public keys transparently. You get a short note telling you when a new key arrives and how to verify it.

Core    Tiger Envelopes starts with one-click cross platform installers and automatic mail client configuration. It quietly adds opportunistic, layered encryption with p2p public key exchange. The control panel makes complex key management and automated testing simple. The technology is all for just one purpose: making your private email easy.

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