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How can I verify encrypted file is not corrupt before FTPing?

Created: 10 Aug 2011 • Updated: 12 Aug 2011 | 7 comments
This issue has been solved. See solution.

I'm using PGP Desktop Professional version 10.1. We have a vendor that needs a text file containing around 3000 lines of sensitive user information.  The information is formated in 3 columns. The process at our end is to encrypted the file with PGP desktop version 10.1 and then FTP the file to their site.  When the file is decrypted on their side many times they claim that the text formatting gets damaged at a certain point in the file (maybe half way through).  The file obviously can not be processed after that point.

Is there a way I can verify that encrypted file is intack before I FTP the file to their site?  I'm trying to identify if the problem is at our end or theirs.

Thanks

G.

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Tom Mc's picture

You can decrypt the file to verify it.  The easy way to be able to do this is by adding your key to the Master Key List on the Master Keys tab of PGP Options - this will result in any file you encrypt as also being encrypted to your key - both you and the intended recipient will be able to decrypt the same file.

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14theroad's picture

Thanks for the quick reply Tom.  Just to clarify I'm encrypting with the other companies Public key and signing with our key.  I added the key as you suggested but when I try to open the file I get the following message..."It is not possible to decrypt this message because your keyring does not contain a usable private key to any of the above public keys".  I assume this will not be possible without having a copy of their private key?

G.

Tom Mc's picture

You apparently did not add a key for which you have the necessary private key.  If you are in a corporate setting, you might not have your private key.  If you do have the private key for the public key you added as a Master Key, right click on it in All Keys of PGP Destkop, select Properties, and set Trust as Implicit.  If you can't do this, you don't have the private key.  If this is the case, you can generate a new key that you use only for this purpose - just generate any key with any User Id you want, and after doing so, add that key to your Master Key List.  This will only work on files that you encrypted after you added your key to the Master Key List.

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14theroad's picture

Thanks Tom.  I have our private key and the other company's public key in my All Keys view. I don't have the option to set the trust as "implicit" on their public key they sent us (option there but greyed out).  So I assume that means I do not have access to their public key.  Does that sound correct?   Although this is not common practice, I guess I could have them, if willing, FTP their private key, import into my key ring and test my files for corruption that way?

Tom Mc's picture

You don't have the ability to set their key as having Implicit Trust because you don't have, don't need, and shouldn't have their private key.  If your key is set as having Implicit Trust, and you have it in your Master Key List , you can now encrypt to the other company's key, and it will also be encrypted to your public key, so you will be able to decrypt as well.

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14theroad's picture

Great Tom.  Thanks for clearing that up .  I was able to decrypyt as per your instructions. 

Thanks again!

SOLUTION
Tom Mc's picture

You are welcome - glad you have this resolved.

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