I am trying to implement a "secure as possible" yet easy to manage (managing customer information) plan for a new site. I for sure want to use SSL for securing the sensitive information in transact. When customer submits sensitive information, that information is then compiled into an e-mail using like PGP 1024-bit encryption and secure signature to protect the e-mail contents and then submit this e-mail via secure send to a private station which then decrypts, authenticates, and then verifies the information. In other words, the sensitive information is securely sent while the general information is stored in a MySQL database. So if someone breaks into the database the information stored there is useless to them.
Just FYI, I will be using PHP and MySQL of course. PHP or even CGI could be used to handle the PGP e-mail compilation. What I found is that PGP constructs the e-mail via shell command executed commands. I am not sure what Dreamhost limits us site administrators to through their available services. Please advise on this.
My implementation is really rough draft so if you have something better in mind please share.