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If you know what this is, then you’ll know what to do with it. Or… if not…

This was the old Hushmail public key (1024 bits!), to which the secret key has long since become lost, of course (new key material available via Keybase). Hushmail was interesting because, eventually, you could generate the PGP key for it externally and upload to their server. This meant you could use it in Hushmail and elsewhere, which was, as I recall, pretty slick back then (though also suggested that you had less than full confidentiality for that particular secret key). Still, at the time Hushmail was indispensable. PGP had been around for some time before this, of course, but back in 2003 it was (and still is, I suppose) a niche tool mostly confined to security nerds and such.

Hushmail, originally based in Anguilla, a geography they touted as part of their privacy pitch (though eventually they shifted to Canada), was a few years old by 2003, and it seemed like the best tool to allow cryptography novices to communicate with third parties (me, for instance) without having to climb the steep learning-curve that PGP was (is) famous for.

Those of us who used Hushmail, convinced that not even their administrators could read the traffic over their servers, were in for a rude surprise in 2007 when it came to light that, not only could they read some of the traffic, but they had also turned over IP logs and plaintext to the FBI in a mail-order steroids trafficking case that eventually became United States v. Tyler Stumbo.

Ironically, you will notice that somewhere along the line an overly-aggressive autocorrect in some editor somewhere converted the iconic five-hyphens of the “BEGIN PGP” line into an en-dash and em-dash, so the novices this key was intended for couldn’t actually import it unless they knew enough about the format of key blocks to edit the header and footers back into five hyphens, implying that they weren’t novices in the first place. I have no idea when that happened or how long this key was “unimportable.”

Version: PGP 8.0.3 mQGiBD55BhIRBACmS12GxIjVhkhLV/V+42S6RgcJWUyBsx0cIQJ0b6wBiKCODrjM XkqLjeoKRj+CH3ZMKNpjyQMz/iUik93YHMKpfZ7tmZcx+08jvHI01xM83N6dAORA /nc7ZIsj+AUHAiHOopKFOIg8MdBkaqZr9jMSZ5qZeKknm1c2ctifGPWpnQCgwANj ll5Dj7tv/E1dvCMn2dB1nQUEAJC4A/bdjL23jMdPfaYv6c8dV0LwRzDp25RltF6a KKXDRhsezxpjFrayRDr5WSh9A0M6AGnCMSfN4cQHTI7EiTHYVKztwfwjriedDR4m 5EOLG3fIeo+89BDvjI0RTLsCXoCfmJBJkZzHvXYn/23AjuoomPD54abjp9hzWA5J t2AaBACCvz9W2FJBV8RlLMKDUDge4g3vuAqF3LhjXx44DrAH0SWcj69FhzE6dAsM kcfWybMDB5M5P+MHs7GS1G9SCPzhwS6bJhpSwkLpnfHJ8o8CViXs2uadleUyNk4B OpfsYmHQbVylMgj7HWRNEvOTrrtsoTqmBxNua7bd8bbty3338YhhBB8RAgAhBQI+ eQYSAgcBFwyAEYpgZW/CY0uc2qKnPHoC+ecnTLYpAAoJEEtqkrALcDhUtW0AoJHN DN/G9M20lxIAVJapXF8zti9mAKCvfrkpYsXGPoDowLT3dvDU5RfcC7QUaXNhZ2ly bEBodXNobWFpbC5jb22IUwQTEQIAEwUCPnkGEgULCQgHAwIVAgMWAQAACgkQS2qS sAtwOFQB4ACfWOM3UwlvnuSfLZUo39TfKIU1oUAAoIdp2j076FE4/K28AE4Mmqri ZUgOiGwEExECACwFAj55BhkDFgEABRsAAAAAGxxIdXNoIENvbW11bmljYXRpb24g REVNTyBDQQAKCRB6AvnnJ0y2KbiBAJ4s6e6aVCuLgKXmX5LMGvclXFpg+ACfRsv+ c9uHhshDEgmKpfkobT2KpFyJAEYEEBECAAYFAj6mH6UACgkQtww4G29NyWy7SgCf bh3l2mw+lbLldyxIp8VHvY4xdEsAoLjgYpIXcOjvsOYnFdUWmrsWAYdCuQINBD55 BhIQCAD2Qle3CH8IF3KiutapQvMF6PlTETlPtvFuuUs4INoBp1ajFOmPQFXz0AfG y0OplK33TGSGSfgMg71l6RfUodNQ+PVZX9x2Uk89PY3bzpnhV5JZzf24rnRPxfx2 vIPFRzBhznzJZv8V+bv9kV7HAarTW56NoKVyOtQa8L9GAFgr5fSI/VhOSdvNILSd 5JEHNmszbDgNRR0PfIizHHxbLY7288kjwEPwpVsYjY67VYy4XTjTNP18F1dDox0Y bN4zISy1Kv884bEpQBgRjXyEpwpy1obEAxnIByl6ypUM2Zafq9AKUJsCRtMIPWak XUGfnHy9iUsiGSa6q6Jew1XpMgs7AAICB/sHoufjTkVaHxCnNG9kkFwrz3MsmnUe lmu4ShUXJsusIg0g/a6yF5KaUzRg/GxtorGEoxNrOq6Wa9Jtf40tNji1pJdetbrM atlXwXTbCDIObtjLOs7k1hOcVosVuTZ3eWhVZna4aPRvJmgYLOdqM0y6xQl8CGVb rWwvZFFmPtXqdu3D8ygBNxUYK7tly+VWSWpHR3fHe7c1D/tbPUXGMRaKYInekbRL TyriRNg1OzbpfMt7VC4jbRXxWkelNHTCXD/JxsrGTMkZsX6J9khnV3J3ImIev4yt wsce97j9QRQR9XP40n65e0MaFX+ke+9mPfZZ4q1GygVLl3RQULTxO87ciEYEGBEC AAYFAj55BhIACgkQS2qSsAtwOFTaiQCdEd7/LdUAjj90KoxegEULmYrrcRMAn1gx dIDzkuTa2AxS0j0KD8uHpQ7O

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