Twin Cities Key Signing


ACM - U of MN Chapter
2-204 EE/CS [building map]
200 Union St [street map] [campus map]
Minneapolis, MN 55455


Thursday, November 10th, 2005
5:30pm to 6:00pm

The event will start at 5:30pm and go until at least 6:00pm or so. We will start the key-signing process promptly at 5:30pm. You may, of course, arrive after 5:30pm, but it may be too late to participate.


Anyone who cares to attend. If you're going to be there you must have your key on the event key ring at by noon on Thursday, November 10th. See below for an exlplaination of just how to do that.

What's a key-signing?

A key-signing is a get-together with PGP users for the purpose of meeting other PGP users and signing each other's keys. This helps to extend the "web of trust" to a great degree. Also, it sometimes serves as a forum to discuss strong cryptography and related issues.

What do I need to participate?

Required Items - You must bring these items or you'll be unable to participate.
  1. Yourself
  2. Positive picture ID
  3. YOUR OWN PRINTED COPY OF your Key ID, Key type, HEX fingerprint, and Key size
  4. A pen/pencil or whatever you'd like to write with....

Before You Attend - You must do this or you'll be unable to participate.
  1. Generate a key pair and remember your pass phrase
  2. Upload your public key to the biglumber key ring for this event. That's easily done by visiting this page and pasting it into the text box before noon on November 10th. It is better to upload your key and not attend then to miss attending by missing the cutoff. You can get an ascii version of your key suitable for pasting with the command:
    gpg --export --armor "Your Name"
  3. Attend the key signing and bring along a paper copy of your key ID, key type, fingerprint, and key size that you obtained from your own keyring. You must also bring along a suitable photo ID.

When We're There - You don't need to worry about this it will be explained at the event.
  1. The host (Ry4an) will give everyone a printed list with each person's key ID, key type, fingerprint, and key size from the compiled keyring.
  2. Each key owner reads his or her key ID, key type, fingerprint, key size, and user ID aloud from the paper copy they brought with them -- not from the distributed listing. This is because there could be an error, intended or not, on the listing.
  3. As each person reads aloud their key info place a check mark by their name if what they have read aloud matches the data on the sheet you were given.
  4. After everyone has read his or her key information, all attendees form a line.
  5. The first person walks down the line having every person check his ID.
  6. The second person follows immediately behind the first person and so on.
  7. If you are satisfied that the person is who they say they are, and that the key on the printout is theirs, you place another check-mark next to their key on your printout.
  8. Once the first person cycles back around to the front of the line he has checked all the other IDs and his ID has been checked by all others.
  9. After everybody has identified himself or herself the formal part of the meeting is over. You are free to leave or to stay and discuss matters of PGP and privacy (or anything else) with fellow PGP users. If everyone is punctual the formal part of the evening should take less than half an hour.

After We're Done - We'll explain this at the event as well.
  1. After confirming that the key information on the big lumber key ring matches the printout that you have checked, sign the appropriate keys. Keys should only be signed if they have two check-marks.
  2. Send the signed keys back to a key server.
  3. Use those keys as often as possible.

Other questions about signing keys?

You may want to read the Keysigning Party Howto which includes an explanation of the concepts behind key signing, instructions for hosting a key signing, instructions for participating in a key signing, and step by step instructions for signing other's keys.

Other useful PGP links

A few more links for PGP newbies, or those who wish to re acquaint themselves.

Didn't you do this before?

Yup. The results can be found here

What if I still have a question?

If you'd like some help answering it, you can contact the event coordinator, Ry4an Brase, via email at

Thu Oct 20 13:15:45 CDT 2005