If you are like me and know your way around computer and technology, then you know how things work, and how easily they can be undermined. There are two topics that I want to tackle with this post: security and privacy.
For a small business owner, security is often not the first thought until their website is hacked or a computer dies.
A significant amount of missing data will leave a big black hole, and can put an entrepreneur in a tailspin.
Looking at how willingly people give away private information via Social Media, I am fully aware that the value that privacy has for me, doesn’t have the same value for others. I am still questioning whether convenience or laziness are the main factors here, or if people simply don’t see the necessity of healthy boundaries.
When talking to entrepreneurs about privacy and security I often run into feelings of insecurity with dealing with the technologies and a general sense of being overwhelmed with this topic. I understand that privacy and security seems like a huge barrier; so huge, that many activate a common denial mechanism and choose to ignore it, hoping that will keep problems from appearing. If that is true for you, too, be assured getting a bit of education and taking action can solve this problem, (or asking someone for help).
Since the disclosures of Edward Snowden, we are now aware that there are extensive possibilities of being spied out. Beginning with these revelations, online applications and SaaS software have became more security conscious. Pioneer developers have started to encrypt the data access to their applications to provide a new layer of security for a very simple reason: It is critical for businesses and organizations to retain control over high-value digital assets.
As more businesses engage with telecommuting (or remote work) – a work arrangement in which employees do not commute to a central place of work – questions of secure data storage, secure communication, and data transfer are being actualized. Telecommuting creates opportunities for businesses to work with people from all around the world, hiring the most talented, or even collaborating with the most creative spirits, for a project.
With this blog post I am introducing a set of useful tools for businesses that help to maintain healthy and secure boundaries in a business’s every day interactions.
11 Tools for Confidentiality in Business
I am going to introduce you to tools from these categories:
- secure data storage
- secure communication
- secure data transfer
CrashPlan – Backup your entire computer hard drive into the cloud with 448-bit encryption including a private key option. – [Free & $$]
SpiderOak – Cloud data storage solution that encrypts all the files locally on your computer, and then uploads it to SpiderOak’s servers. Any changes you make to your files and folders are synced with the local decrypted versions, before being secured and uploaded. – [Free & $$]
TresorIT – Data storage solution that offers best-in-class protection and privacy. Offers file synchronization, sharing and collaboration features, and user management. – [Free & $$]
Witkit – Secure data storage and communication platform for teams that offers 50 GB of free data storage. Each member of a team can create unique encryption keys to his or her data. Instant messaging feature for images, files, video chat and group chat. – [Free & $$]
Wuala – Encrypts your files locally, and then uploads them to the cloud for safekeeping. Encryption and decryption is handled locally using a password you set, so no one else can access your files. – [$$] — Update: Wuala has recently terminated its service.
Sqwiggle – Video conferencing, team chat and file sharing tool. Provides encrypted media streams and AES-256 encryption for file sharing and storage. – [shut down]
Threema – A communication app for Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Blackberry and Amazon Fire OS, that uses asymmetric cryptography to protect messages between sender and receiver, as well as the communication between the app and the servers. – [$$]
Wickr – A messaging platform that is designed to give control over security back to their users. Encrypts data with AES-256. Works on desktops with Windows, OS X, Linux 32bit and Linux 64 bit, and on mobile devices with iOS and Android. – [Free]
HighTail – Allows you to send files up to 10 GB from a computer or mobile device. Comes with features of password protection, identity verification, file tracking and data encryption. – [Free & $$]
Senditonthenet – Free service that lets you send and receive files that are encrypted in the browser. It works entirely through a web browser and you get an 80 MB attachment limit. You can enter messages to accompany your packages and while the text is not RSA encrypted, though the whole message is still sent over HTTPS. – [Free]
WeTransfer – A service that lets you send confidential files that expire after 7 days (with a free account). Instead of having to send these confidential data via email, this service sends the receiver a download link to the file and removes the file from their servers after the announced timeframe. – [Free & $$]
Over to You
Using tools to secure your business’ privacy is certainly a good move. But having a proper security strategy in place that includes backups, website security and a safe password policy are equally important. There are quite a few ways to have one’s trustworthiness undermined, so by applying appropriate precautions every entrepreneur can take significant steps to protect their business and income basis.
If you would like a helping hand with tightening your online or business’ security, check out my technical services or drop me a line for a special arrangement. I also offer clarity sessions where I help entrepreneurs to identify how to best set up their technical infrastructures.
Should you know other tools that support confidentiality in business, feel free to share them with us in the comment section below!