HOW TO: Encrypt/Decrypt Text Using the Clipboard feature with PGP Encryption Desktop for macOS (Symantec Encryption Desktop)
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HOW TO: Encrypt/Decrypt Text Using the Clipboard feature with PGP Encryption Desktop for macOS (Symantec Encryption Desktop)


Article ID: 246178


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This article will go over the functionality to encrypt/decrypt text using the "Clipboard" feature to encrypt and decrypt.  PGP Encryption Desktop (Symantec Encryption Desktop) has another feature called "PGP Viewer" that will allow you to decrypt content using an application.   


To be able to Encrypt the text, for this example, we will open TextEdit on macOS and type some text:

We will then open PGP Encryption Desktop so that the PGP top menus are available:


Now highlight the text in the text editor and press "Command + a" to highlight all the text, and then press "Command + c" to copy.  When you copy the text with "Command + c", this will copy to the clipboard.  PGP Desktop can then encrypt the clipboard to any key you would like.

Next, click on the "Edit" top menu for PGP Desktop and you will see the option to "Encrypt Clipboard...":


You will be prompted to encrypt to a set of keys that you wish to.  In this case, we will encrypt to the key named "User1":


This will encrypt the clipboard contents.  Now paste with "Command + v" and the result will be encrypted ciphertext:


This encrypted text can then be sent to someone to decrypt. 



Decryption of these steps will be very similar in that you first copy the ciphertext into the clipboard by first highlighting all the text with "Command + a".  Then use "Command + c" to copy to the clipboard:

Once you have copied the encrypted ciphertext to the clipboard, then select the "Decrypt" option from the top menu:

Once you do, you will be prompted for the passphrase to decrypt the text:

Now you can paste the contents and should now be pasted with the original text.


PGP Encryption Desktop also allows the use of the "PGP Viewer" application, which can be used to decrypt emails.  To access PGP Viewer, click the padlock icon on the top-right corner of the menu:

Once you open the PGP Viewer, you will see the following screen:


As shown in the screenshot, drag your encrypted email into the PGP Viewer pane and it should prompt for the passphrase and allow to decrypt.

For further assistance, please reach out to Symantec Encryption Support

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