Thursday, Apr. 12, 2012
Law Practice Management Tip
Layering security in the cloud II: client-side encryption tools
Previously in this space, we covered some
homegrown methods for further securing documents uploaded to cloud
providers. Our focus last time was on Dropbox, which
had recently suffered a significant security breach.
However, what is known as 'client-side encryption' is not exclusively a
jury-rig/do-it-yourself system, that is only applicable to one
service. While you can use, as we suggested last time, your
existing productivity and security tools (like Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat and freeware products, like TrueCrypt) to
encrypt your files for upload to cloud storage/sharing sites, there
are also stand-alone products that will allow you to encrypt
documents for upload to cloud providers, on-the-fly.
These services will, just like your homebrew solutions, allow
you to reverse the general dynamic of the cloud upload, in which
the cloud provider maintains the encryption key. With the use of a
service dedicated to the proposition, you'll not only maintain the
encryption key (that neither the cloud provider you use, nor the
potential hacker will know), but you'll also have access to a more
full-featured tool, that can work across devices.
Last time, we made reference to SecretSync,
which sounds like it would work with SugarSync,
but is promoted as being useful for engagements with Dropbox; and,
there is also BoxCryptor, which ostensibly works with
Dropbox, and CloudFogger. These tools, though, because they
are another set of pre-encryption services, can work with just
about any cloud provider. These programs are all free, to start,
with rates accruing (or about to be accruing) based on the number
of gigabytes in use; in this way, the pricing model exactly
reflects that imposed by the services these client-side encryptors
seek to further protect you on.
Everybody wants to make sure that their documents are secure on
the web; now, you have two simple and distinct methods (d-i-y +
third-party tools) to take control of your security in the
*Thanks to Jim Brashear, general counsel for ZixCorp, for
bringing to my attention BoxCryptor, and then CloudFogger. To
hear Jim's thoughts on email encryption, listen here.
Tip courtesy of Jared Correia, Law Office
Management Assistance Program.
Published April 12, 2012
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