It is well-known that e-mail is not a very secure way of transmitting information. E-mails can be read on their way to the recipient by anyone who tries and who knows how to. This can be a problem when you want to send private information, like credit card data or anything else that you want to keep secret.
But you can encrypt such mails. The most wide-spread standard of encryption is called PGP or "Pretty Good Privacy", a trademark of Phil's Pretty Good Software.
For using it, the sender and the recipient each need to generate their own encryption keys. Everyone using PGP has a public key and a private key. If you want to send me a secure message, you encrypt it with your private and my public key. I - and only I - can then decrypt it with your public and my private key.
First, you get a copy of the PGP software and install it on your system. You can get it from the PGP website. Then you follow the instructions and generate your personal pair of keys.
To send me a secure message, you need to download and import my public key.
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