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The Future will be Encrypted

Posted In Security, Technology Reviews - By Techtiplib on Tuesday, April 15th, 2014 With No Comments »

The revolution may not be televised, but many believe it will be encrypted. Privacy activists are calling for more rigorous methods in data security, from initiation – to – the end of data transmission, across the globe.  From corporate espionage, to governmental encroachment, data security and integrity, is at a critical juncture.   Getting the “Big Dogs” of data transmission –­­­­­­­ Google, Facebook, AT&T, and Yahoo, among other smaller fish, to pony up and join those who want to lock the backdoors to data they leave open, will be key. 

From the Horse’s Mouth

At this year’s South by Southwest music festival (in Austin, TX), someone who intimately knows how vulnerable global data is, Edward Snowden, went on record endorsing end-to-end encryption.   This contrasts with the encryption methods currently supported by Facebook, Google, Skype and others.   Snowden and others point to the glaring fact that all government agencies have been able to obtain individuals’ communication records through these data intermediaries by simply presenting a court order or hacking into them.  In either case, the integrity of individual data is not something to be trusted to any third-parties.  It must be protected by decisions and technologies that put it in the hands of individuals.

How can you stay secure and protect your data online? Well it's actually not that hard when you have a reliable encryption solution.Moreover, the New York Times reported that the NSA has been actively working to circumvent encryption by compelling companies to hand over private encryption keys, manipulating third-party software or hardware (i.e., creating backdoors or Trojan horse’s in data encryption of cloud service providers), or stealing encryption keys (Source: http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/03/12/a-call-for-a-highly-encrypted-future/).   The jury’s still out on the proposed restrictions the Obama administration has recently proposed to scale back the scope of NSA spying.  But, as Snowden remarked, end-to-end encryption can eliminate the vulnerability inherent in the Google, Facebook, etc. models, by encrypting messages the second they begin to travel from a sender’s computer, rather than after it has reached a third-party’s data center (as in the case of Facebook, et. al). 

What this means is that if the government wants your records, they’ll have to get them the good old-fashioned way, by asking you.  “The result is a more constitutional, more carefully overseen enforcement model,” Snowden said. “If they want to gather each user’s communications, they have to go to them specifically.”

How can you stay secure and protect your data online? Well it’s actually not that hard when you have a reliable encryption solution. Encryption will allow a user to protect their critcal data by setting up authentication before the device is even turned on! This is called pre-boot authentication and it’s an great solution for people that want ‘lock-down’ systems from unauthorized access (Source: http://www.winmagic.com/products/enterprise-server-encryption/pre-boot-authentication). If your computer is lost or storlen, pre boot authentication will make that that the data on the drive remains secure and encrpted giving you peace of mind. Encryption is also great for protecting your files by requiring a password or token to get in, which keeps away hackers in the event of a secuirty breach. Remember that encryption is here to stay and it’s important to get your personal and business data secure!

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