German Ministry Donates to GNU Project

The German Federal Ministry for Economics and Technology plans to give Open Source project GNU Privacy Guard 250,000 Marks ($253,000) by end of the year.

The project is developing an open source version of encryption software based on the Linux operating system.

GNU Privacy Guard (GPG) is RFC2440 (OpenPGP) compatible and supports numerous other encryption processes. It has the advantage over the previous “Pretty Good Privacy” (PGP) in that it does not infringe any export limitations on encryptology.

The Federal Ministry campaign “Security in the Internet Security in the Information Society” expressly supports the development of open and freely accessible security standards, and offers a forum for discussion of this theme on its own Web site.

The office sees an urgent need for a form of secure, protected and authenticated system, and with the aid of GPG it wants to support the development of simple user interfaces and compatibility with other operating systems. The hope is that an universally accessible, free and verifiable encryption tool will be developed.

The ministry says it expects to achieve a higher level of security by quicklay reaching a critical number of installations.

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