Get facebook Email Notifications Securely with LuxSci Email

Published: September 23rd, 2015

facebook has a great feature where you can have all facebook notifications sent to you using PGP-encrypted email.  This is great if you want to be sure that noone except for you can read these messages.

LuxSci has supported sending and receiving PGP-encrypted email for the last 10 years, since the introduction of SecureLine email encryption services (10 years old this month).

In this article, we show you how users of LuxSci WebMail with SecureLine can setup facebook so that all facebook notices will be encrypted and delivered securely to their email Inboxes.

If you don’t have LuxSci email hosting yet, you can try it free.

If you are a LuxSci customer but don’t have SecureLine yet, you can upgrade.

Step 1: Getting your PGP Public Key

LuxSci supports PGP and S/MIME for very secure email encryption, as well as TLS-Only and secure message pickup portals for email security.  To have facebook send you encrypted messages, you need to use PGP and to have a “public PGP key”.  This is easy, as LuxSci can create this for you automatically:

  1. Login to LuxSci.com
  2. Navigate to: Account > Security > Security Certificates
  3. If you do not yet have a PGP certificate there:
    1. Click the button “Create new PGP Certificate.”
    2. Enter a password for it.
    3. Check the “Password Escrow” checkbox if you want us to save a copy of this password in case you forget it … or in case you want to have these secure messages auto-decrypted upon arrival to LuxSci.  Otherwise, leave it unchecked for better security.
    4. Click “Generate Certificate.”
    5. (Wait about 1-2 minutes)
  4. Once you have a PGP certificate on that page (press refresh to update if you just generated one).
    1. Click on the “Export” button for that certificate.
    2. Enter your password and press “Export.”
    3. Press the “Download” button to next to “Public”.  This will download a small file containing your public PGP key.   You can open it using any text editor or word processor.

Step 2: Enabling Secure facebook Notices

  1. Login to facebook
  2. Goto your “About” tab (right next to the “Timeline” tab, right next to your square “profile picture”).
    1. Click on the “Contact and Basic Info” section (the link is in the menu on the left).
  3. Under “Email,” make sure that your LuxSci login email address is listed (add it if it is not — you want facebook to send your notifications to this address).
  4. You should see a link “+ Add a public key” under the email section.  Click on this.
    1. Copy the contents of the PGP public key file that you downloaded, above.
    2. Paste this into that new box in the facebook interface.
    3. Check the box “Use this public key to encrypt notification emails that facebook sends to you?”
    4. Click on “Save Changes.”
  5. facebook will now send you an (encrypted) email verification message to make sure that you can get these messages and that you can actually decrypt them.  It should land in your LuxSci Inbox if you havefacebook configured to send notifications to yourLuxSci-hosted email address.
    1. Go into LuxSci WebMail.
    2. Find this message.
    3. Click on it to open it.
    4. You will need to enter your PGP certificate password (unless that is cached/remembered for you already).
    5. Once you open the message, you can tell facebook to start encrypting all new messages to you by clicking on the small verification link “Yes, encrypt notification emails sent to me from facebook.” at the bottom of the now-decrypted message from facebook.

That is it … your messages from facebook will now besecured so that only you can open them and only using your special PGP password.

Note that by default, LuxSci WebMail securely remembers your PGP password for you, once you have entered it, until you logout from LuxSci.  You can change this in your preferences (Account > Security > Settings, click on “Advanced,” and edit your “Security certificate password caching duration”).

Additionally, if you configured LuxSci to save your PGP password, you can optionally use your Custom Email Filters to have LuxSci auto-decrypt all inbound PGP-encrypted messages for you once they arrive at LuxSci — if you value the convenience of having them already decrypted and are only concerned about their security in transit to LuxSci.

Contact LuxSci support for more information.

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