Experts have warned of the danger to encrypt emails

PGP is leaking your emails in plaintext and there's no known fix

Users of PGP email encryption have been warned to stop using the software immediately because a newly discovered security flaw may make it possible to read encrypted messages.

Cluley said organisations should also consider disabling rendering of remote content until the issue is resolved, preventing automatic decryption of email messages and requiring users to manually request decryption instead to reduce the chances of data leakage via active content. Security experts said the vulnerabilities would likely soon be targeted, and recommended users follow Schinzel's advice immediately. The attacker would then have to get the sender or one of the receivers of the previously obtained message to open a new attacker-sent email. To create these exfiltration channels, the attacker first needs access to the encrypted emails, for example, by eavesdropping on network traffic, compromising email accounts, email servers, backup systems or client computers. From there, the actor manipulates the ciphertext of the email.

Security researchers have gone public with vulnerabilities in some secure mail apps that can be exploited by miscreants to decrypt intercepted PGP-encrypted messages.

University researchers from Muenster and Bochum in Germany, and Leuven in Belgium, discovered the flaws in the encryption methods that can be used with popular e-mail applications such as Microsoft Outlook and Apple Mail. Researchers believe a simple patch will be able to address this issue, though it's presently quite easy to exploit.

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The Electronic Frontier Foundation, on the other hand, is urging users to disable or uninstall PGP email plugins until the EFail threat is more widely understood.

EFF, the world's biggest digital rights group, which has seen the details, says that such a vulnerability is an "immediate risk to those using these tools for email communication, including the potential exposure of the contents of past messages". Koch for instance said that OpenPGP's message authentication that thwarts EFAIL (in place since 2001) can't be made mandatory because "some implementations haven't kept up".

"Don't use HTML mails". EFF has a write up on this also with all the links you need if reading Twitter is not your thing. He recommended switching off HTML emails or using authenticated encryption.

But if you're still anxious, you can always opt for plain-text over HTML emails - or just use Signal like everyone else.

UPDATE 2: Because some researchers started disclosing details about the vulnerability ahead of schedule, the efail.de website is now live, along with the research paper, both containing more info on the EFAIL vulnerability.

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