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[Discuss] need to set up fax-mail system

 Hi Dan, thanks for the comments!

On Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 10:44:11PM -0400, Dan Ritter wrote:
> On Fri, Aug 26, 2011 at 10:31:28PM -0400, Jeff Kinz wrote:
> > Hi all, posting from a new email address.
> > 
> > I want to implement a system that sends faxes by email, whilst keeping
> > the fax contents secure from prying eyes and maintaining some degree of
> > certainty that the claimed sender is the actual sender.
> Why are you bothering with faxes? They have largely been
> replaced by:
> 1. email attached files of any sort

Thats true for you and I and this community, but the legal community
and the medical community still rely on faxes for "security".
(Or something.... ) 

I can't send an email to the court clerk as an official document.
It has to be faxed, or physically delivered. 

Many Doctors will not accept email for liability reasons attributed to
HIPAA and SarBox issues. Real reason or not, they will accept faxes. 

Yes, some doctors will do email but they are not the issue.

My health insurance insists on faxed forms. 

> > Ultimately I just want to see all fax machines go away. 
> That's happening.
Yes, but not in the communities mentioned above which is the issue.
Those communities would have already switched over to email if 
they were ever going to. 

> > I think almost everyone knows how this can be done without writing any 
> > new software, just re-purposing tools we already have. 
> > 
> > I'd like to know if anyone sees problems with this basic idea, as in
> > sane or not sane? 
> > Anyone see Problems? 
> > Scaling is known issue but I want to hear it anyway.
> > I assume that more people have email today that have fax machines and so
> > would probably rather get a fax by email than by fax.
> True.
> > Also I assume PDF's suck and/or are an ongoing security hazard and/or
> > a continuing headache to wrangle and/or don't give people sufficient access
> > to their text content so they can't be searched or indexed.
> Likely false.

I see I wasn't clear enough here. :-D      PDF's SUCK!   :-) 

There is an ongoing security issue w/PDFs carrying explotable vectors
and these keep showing up. See 
Latest seen June 2011. But that is not the major thing wrong with

If someone sends me a document, it damn well better be searchable and
indexable. Most PDF's I get are locked up so tight you can't even 
copy a few words of text off the page to google 'em.  If I cant access
the content enough to search and index it, then I don't want it. 
Un-searcheable content is so twentieth century! 

[ those pdf's come from lawyers, go figure.. ]

> > also assume that the software to hold key and crypt/decrypt will run on
> > Linux, *NIX, Darwin, BSD's Windows, IOS, Android, Wince. [ or can be 
> > made to run there]
> Biggest problem of all: you are proposing a secure system where
> it is nontrivial for new users to join the network.

I was thinking of this as no harder than signing up for gmail. Whats the
hard part?  We are not seeing the same thing here. What is your
vision of this?

> Second biggest: you have to set up a real PKI that humans will
> have to understand to use. OK, maybe that's even bigger than the
> first.

My mom and Aunt Tillie will never understand PKI, and they don't
understand how cars or computers work. But they both use cars and
computers just fine.  Same deal here. The software will know the "how
to" and the UI will present some kind of magic buttons to be clicked to
"send secure faxmail"

Clearly the software will need to be Smart and Hard. Meaning
it will always know what to do, and be easy for people to use,
while being very secure at the same time. 

> Third biggest: the problem is already being solved in much
> simpler ways.

For most people, yes its already solved. Unfortunately my need is for
these oddball legal and health communities who have made a specific
decision to never use email for these types of transactions. So they
need to pushed over the cliff by something else.

Bonus - once such a system exists, the PKI aspects can be used to enable 
a ton of very useful features and services.

This email partially created with "Dragon Naturally Speaking" speech
recognition system, aka "NS" or "NatSpeak". 
Note: the email may have incorrectly transcribed content.

Jeff Kinz, Emergent Design.
"Carpe Piscis." -> "Seize the Fish" -> "Fish the Seize"

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