Using Academic Signature under
Presently the "Highest End Security" against US and other
government agencies may be using Academic Signature for document
enciphering and exchange under TAILS
.(Please excuse my hubris, but this is what I believe.) Using
TAILS is somewhat inconvenient, so you may want to use this only
if you suspect you are specifically and personally targeted by any
of these organizations.
As we know today this doesn't only happen to the bad guys but
unfortunately also to very honorable people.
Apparently nowadays it doesn't take more than to google for TAILS
or TOR just once to be
labeled as extremist by the US administration. From there it might
be a very short step to being labeled as terrorist.
once and again TAILS comes with broken dependencies, I
compiled a version of academic signature which works on TAILS
3.0.1. You can find it here:
of the archive, my ECDSA-signature
and my ECC-timestamp.
Just unzip to a folder in your persistent storage, mark the
binary as executable and use this local copy.
If your TAILS
suffers from broken dependencies , you may
alternatively try to fix these by going to a terminal and
sudo apt-get clean;
sudo apt-get update;
sudo dpkg --configure -a;
sudo apt-get install -f;
Chances are, you'll
be able then to install "g++", "libgtk3.0" and "make" and
then compile from source for yourself.
Since TAILS is based on a Debian
and I develop Academic Signature on a recent Ubuntu(based on a
recent Debian), my published binaries might not run on TAILS
because some libraries might not match.
You will have to compile Academic Signature yourself in a
persistent folder in this case under TAILS(or use the dedicated
binaries linked above).
(Thanks Dirk for pointing out some issues, I tried to
address them and included some of your comments below.)
a) Set a root password on booting TAILS.
b) Make sure to have a persistent folder on your TAILS.
c) Download the Academic Signature source archive(or the alternate
source) and my GnuPG signature to the persistent folder.
d) Verify my GnuPG Signature of the Academic Signature
source.(GnuPG is included in TAILS).
You can find my public OpenPGP-key here: https://www.fh-wedel.de/%7Ean/crypto/academic_signature_key.html
or on the MIT Keyserver
e) Unzip the source archive.
f) Run "sudo apt-get update" in
g) In Synaptic (Applications, System Tools, Administration),
select the following three packages: make, g++ and
libwxgtk3.0-dev. A number of additional dependencies will be
taken care of automatically. This will take up about 75Mb. of
additional disk space.
This step has
to be redone, if you want to build aca_sig again in a new TAILS
g) in a terminal type:
apt-get install g++;
apt-get install wxgtk3.0;
apt-get install make;
3 a) (for the tarball) Change to Aca-sig's
download directory and call as usual "./configure" then
Upon successful building, you use the local binary. Installation
to the system via "sudo make install" should be omitted since it
would only install for this session and would not persist in
TAILS - just work with the local copy of the binary and the
local helper subdirectories "x_secrets" and "key_tray" in the
3 option b) (for the alternate source) Change to
Aca-sig's download directory and directly call the hand-made
makefile "make release".
Upon successful building, you should use the local binary.
Installation to the system via "sudo make install" should be
omitted since it would only install for this session and would not
persist in TAILS - just work with the local copy of the binary and
the local helper subdirectories "x_secrets" and "key_tray" in the
aca_sig directory in the persistent folder.
Both methods work for me with the current TAILS 1.6(up to TAILS
3.0.1 by now) without problems.
You may want to get
some practice with TAILS (and Academic Signature, TOR,
GnuPG,...) even if you are not specifically targeted. This would
be a useful exercise to be prepared for the worst......
As I read in a discussion forum: The Gulags and KZs of the 20th
century were full of innocent people who had "nothing to hide".
May honesty, openness, tolerance and democracy prevail,
we don't need Orwellian thought
control by administrations that tortured,
let known torturers run
around on the loose
and tell the world about