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Tails stores random seed on USB stick for stronger encryption

The newest version of the Linux-based and privacy and security-focused operating system Tails now stores a random seed on the USB stick or DVD to strengthen all cryptography.

Tails -an acronym that’s short for The Amnesic Incognito Live System- is an alternate operating system or OS that’s aimed at preserving online privacy, anonymity and security. It is based on Linux and exclusively connects to the internet via Tor, a worldwide network of servers developed for anonymous communication. That means your IP address is always shielded.

Tails was designed to boot from a USB stick or DVD. The operating system never stores data on an internal or external hard drive. That way it never leaves a digital footprint, which makes it practically impossible to obtain or ascertain your identity.

Simply put, everything you do on your computer disappears automatically whenever you shut down Tails. Nobody knows what websites you visited, what files you opened, or what passwords you entered.

In some cases it may come in handy to save some of your files, browser bookmarks, emails and additional software on the external drive. For those instances the developers invented a feature called Persistent Storage, which encrypts your data on the USB stick.

To ensure your online anonymity and avoid online surveillance, Tails has loads of privacy-friendly features like Thunderbird for encrypted emails, KeePassXC password manager, OnionShare for sharing files and websites, and Metadata Cleaner to remove metadata from files.

Stronger encryption for everyone

Tails 6.4, the newest version of the Linux-based operating system, brings a new feature called random seed.

For numerous cryptographic uses, such as connecting to HTTPS addresses or the Tor network, Tails uses a secure random number generator. The more random a seed, the harder it is to break the generated encryption.

To make sure all users benefit from a stronger cryptography, the random seed is stored outside the Persistent Storage.

Finally, Tails 6.4 fixes several problems encountered when using the OS, like when connecting to a mobile broadband network, unlocking Persistent Storage and enabling the PDF reader of Thunderbird, which was disabled in Tails 6.3 for security reasons.

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