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Secure Email While traveling

I am looking at ways to both send and retrieve email while traveling. Since I use hotel internet connections and public wireless connection, I am looking at a way to secure the connection. My traveling laptop is windows.

My idea is this.

1. Connect using ssh to the Linux server with a couple of tunnels from local ports to the mail ports. (25 Sendmail, 143 IMAP, 110 POP3)
2. Point my email programs (Outlook for work, Thunderbird for personnel) to the local ports connected to the tunnel
3. Send and recieve mail.

This should encrypt the connection for the mail so that no one could monitor my passwords or read my mail.

Also Sendmail will see me as a local user (I think) and relay out my mail.

Has anyone else tried this? Am I missing something. Is there an easier way.

When I travel I open the mail ports throught the firewall and they get hit pretty hard. Average about 50 failed attempts a day at logging on as different users (nobody, guest, etc). This way I would only need to open the ssh port.


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