An Interesting Approach to Encryption

Encryption is essential for communications and files that contain sensitive or confidential information, and it’s important on a number of levels:

  •  Users and their employers need to protect sensitive content like intellectual property, trade secrets, marketing plans, and even content like embargoed press releases when sent through email or stored in the cloud.
  • They also need to protect content that is subject to privacy regulations like the GDPR in order to avoid running afoul of their regulatory obligations.
  • Cloud providers need their customers to use encryption to prevent governments from successfully accessing confidential files: if customers’ files are encrypted and therefore inaccessible to providers, that effectively lets them off the hook, since they have no access to their customers’ content.

PreVeil has released an interesting technology that is designed to encrypt users’ emails and files. The system offers end-to-end encryption of content using the Curve 25519 and XSalsa20 ciphers, including email subject lines and file names (FIPS-compliant algorithms are also available). Every email and document sent through PreVeil is encrypted with a unique key and no key is ever visible to the server that stores the information. Users each receive a public/private key pair, with the public key stored on the server and the private key stored only on each user’s individual devices. All document creators digitally sign document keys to ensure the authenticity of the content they’re accessing.

A unique feature of PreVeil’s encryption technology is its use of “Shamir Secret Sharing”, a technique that allows the distribution of users’ keys among what PreVeil calls an “Approval Group”. Each user’s key is cryptographically fragmented and distributed among members of the group. While each of these fragments are stored by PreVeil on its servers, the keys used to decrypt each fragment are not stored in a central location. This provides an extra level of security that can help to prevent damage resulting from the takeover of an administrator’s privileged account.

PreVeil is designed to integrate with various email clients, including Microsoft Outlook and Apple Mail, and also offers PreVeil Drive, which the company bills as an alternative to Dropbox, OneDrive, Box and other file-sharing solutions.

Pricing for PreVeil varies from free for individual users that offers one gigabyte of storage, to $10 per user per month for 100 gigabytes of storage, to $20 per user per month for corporate users (five terabytes of pooled storage).

More information on the company is available here.

 

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