Import/ Export Keys in PGP Desktop for Mac
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Import/ Export Keys in PGP Desktop for Mac

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Article ID: 153457

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Updated On:

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Symantec Products

Issue/Introduction


After you create your PGP Desktop keypair, you need to get your public key to those with whom you intend to exchange encrypted messages.

You make your public key available to others so they can send you encrypted information and verify your digital signature; and you need their public key to send encrypted messages to them.

You can distribute your public key in various ways:

 

  • Publish your key on the PGP Global Directory
  • Include your public key in an email message
  • Export your public key or copy it to a text file

This article details how to import and export key using PGP Desktop 9.x for Mac.

 

Resolution

Import/Export PGP Keys

You can import/export PGP public keys and PKCS-12 X.509 certificates (a digital certificate format used by most Web browsers) to your PGP Desktop keyring. You can also import Privacy Enhanced Mail (PEM) format X.509 certificates from your browser by copying and pasting into your public keyring. 
 

Import PGP Keys

There are several ways to import someone's public key and add it to your keyring. These methods include: double-click and click and drag.

Double-click  

  1. Double click the file (i.e. keyname.asc) on your system. If PGP Desktop recognizes the file format, it will open and ask if you want to encrypt using the key(s) in the file. When you select the key and click OK, it is imported to your keyring.
     

Click and Drag 

  1. Open PGP Desktop.
  2. Click PGP Keys so that the list of keys is displayed on the right.
  3. Drag the file containing the public key (i.e. keyname.asc) onto the PGP Keys window, enter the passphrase protecting the key (if applicable).
  4. Select the key and click OK.

Export PGP Keys

There are several ways to export keys out of PGP Desktop. These methods include: exporting the key within PGP Desktop, using the Send to feature in PGP Desktop, and or the click and drag method.

PGP Desktop Export Feature  

  1. Open PGP Desktop. Click Keys to display the keys available for export.
  2. Highlight the PGP key you wish to export, pull down the File menu, and select Export. You may also right click on the key you wish to export and select Export in the drop down menu.
  3. When the Export Key to File window appears, select a location to export the key, and then click Save. The key will then be exported to an .asc file (i.e. keyname.asc) to the location you specified.

 

Note: This will only export the public key. If you wish to include the private key (not recommended unless you are exporting the private key to another machine which you will be using), you may select the box near the bottom of the window marked Include Private Key(s).


Send to Feature (Public key only)  

  1. Open PGP Desktop. Click Keys from the left menu to display the keys available for export.
  2. Right click on the key you wish to export and point to Send Key To Server within the drop down list. Click on the keyserver in the sub-menu that you wish to send the key to.

Click and Drag (Public key only)  

  1. Open PGP Desktop. Click Keys to display the keys available for export.
  2. Click and drag the key you wish to export outside of the PGP Desktop window. You may drag the file to your Desktop or a drive/folder of your choice.