Use Trezor for GPG passphrases
# Trezor as a GPG passphrase
Install with: ` pip install trezor-gpg `
Using this, when GPG needs to unlock a key trezor_gpg will bring up a keypad to enter your Trezor PIN.
You may enter your PIN using the on-screen buttons or the keyboard grids
` w e r u i o 7 8 9 s d f j k l 4 5 6 x c v m , . 1 2 3 `
Press enter to submit the PIN, escape to cancel, or backspace to clear the PIN.
# Advantages and disadvantages
- This prevents passphrase keylogging
- It uses a difficult passphrase by default
- It reduces the number of things you need to remember (assuming you already remember your Trezor PIN)
If you’re using this for general encryption:
- It doesn’t protect your GPG secret from memory eavesdropping as would directly using Trezor’s decrypt/encrypt functions
If you’re using this for a password manager like pass or gopass:
- If someone were to implement a direct-Trezor password manager without GPG the decryption key would never be in your computer memory, so unused passwords would be safer.
Also, see the current limitations discussed below.
gpg2 must be installed and on your PATH. This guide assumes you’re using the default GPG2 agent and not Seahorse.
- Run pip install trezor_gpg
- Find where it’s installed with by running which trezor_gpg
- Add this line to ~/.gnupg/gpg-agent.conf: pinentry-program /path/to/trezor_gpg
- Run echo RELOADAGENT | gpg-connect-agent or restart your computer
### Setting up Trezor passphrases
- Run trezor_gpg -a KEY
If your key has an existing non-Trezor passphrase, you need to remove the passphrase with the default pinentry program first (before doing step 3 above).
Note: Responding to the old passphrase prompt requires trezor_gpg to identify certain prompt messages - if you have messages in a language other than English this may not work. Adding a passphrase may ask for you to press confirm on your Trezor up to 4 times.
### Removing a Trezor passphrase
- Run trezor_gpg -r KEY
Note: Responding to the new passphrase prompt requires trezor_gpg to identify certain prompt messages - if you have messages in a language other than English this may not work.
### Disable redundant GPG passphrase cache You may also want to disable GPG passphrase caching sinze Trezor has it’s own cache period. Add this to gpg-agent.conf or modify the value if it’s already there: ` max-cache-ttl 0 ` and restart the agent via step 4 above.
Set these environment variables on your gpg-agent daemon, by overriding /usr/lib/systemd/user/gpg-agent.service for example.
- PINENTRY_TREZOR_DEBUG = 1. Write logs to ~/.cache/trezor-gpg/log/debug.log
- PINENTRY_TREZOR_DONT_FLASH = 1. Don’t show which keypad button was pressed when using the keyboard.
- PINENTRY_TREZOR_KEYSET = 123456789. Use this letter grid for keyboard entry.
# Current Limitations
- This doesn’t use locked memory, which means the decrypted passphrase may be written to disk if memory is paged out!
- No support for TTY entry since Python getpass is hardcoded to a specific TTY
- No mixed passphrase support - all passphrased keys must have Trezor passphrases or none
- Passphrases are based on the key fingerprint so they can’t be changed
# How It Works
trezor_gpg acts as a pinentry program - when GPG needs to unlock an existing key or lock a new key it runs trezor_gpg. trezor_gpg treats the key’s fingerprint as an encrypted blob and decrypts it to use as a synthetic passphrase. The fingerprint is unique to the key and an inseparable property, so if you export the key and import it on another system trezor_gpg can still retrieve all the information it needs.
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