Monday, October 11, 2010

postcards and encryption

People used to use the postcards argument when trying to promote email encryption — “You put sensitive or private information in a letter, instead of writing it on a postcard.” Today, more people than ever use unencrypted email, text messages, and instant messaging. The usual case is that their passwords are encrypted (but that's not even true for a lot of POP3 users). Almost no one sends letters, though they do receive bills and such, and identity theft is a larger issue than it was fifteen years ago or so.

Is there a more relevant analogy than postcards for the current age?

1 comment:

J.D. said...

Perhaps: would you read your credit card number over your mobile phone in a crowded restaurant, or on a bus?

I think it's applicable because odds are, nobody will write down the number -- but they could, and you'd never know until it's too late.

And, by now just about everyone has overheard a stranger having an uncomfortably personal phone conversation nearby.