"Keep your confidential emails confidential"
The world demands more and more accessibility to anything and everything. Sometimes, we forget that we, either as individuals or as a company, aren't the only ones who crave easy access. Just take a look at the past year or so, with countless "leaked information" on upcoming Berrys and other devices. Even some corporate downfalls can be credited to information from a simple email in the wrong hands. A misplaced Berry, or a prying eye could spell disaster. In this day and age, we cannot disconnect the phones, shut off our computers and mobiles and just stop talking to everybody. Dear old Uncle Ben taught us "With great power comes great responsibility." It's time to look at what we can do to ensure our privacy and security. ** special offer for CrackBerry Readers at the end! **
Prevention over Apprehension.
I had an opportunity to chat with the DataLocking Company, who provide complete, worldwide privacy and security solutions for those who rely on communication by email, like me. Not only can they secure messages on your BlackBerry, but your information will be secured in every nook and cranny that an email can be stored or viewed. The name is Blundell, Ryan Blundell. I have a license to Kill (my Berry if need be). My mission is to share with you, the DataLocking Company's vision and solution for complete privacy.
About the DataLocking Company
The DataLocking Company is a BlackBerry Alliance Member that is privately owned and based out of California. They are also partnered with T-Mobile and Vox Mobile. Its use of technology started off in Canada. In its early days, there was a group of high net worth individuals who were experiencing issues on their corporate servers, mainly with sending emails that contained proprietary information. This group approached the DataLocking Company, looking for a way to secure communications and email so that their own people weren't leaking trade secrets and other sensitive information. Since then, they've grown from providing specific applications, to a suite of applications that can be tailored to an individual or a company's needs.
I was able to get a hand's on look at their email encryption capabilities. The DataLocking Company utilizes an S/MIME 4096 bit encryption service through secure servers to keep a tight grip on the information shared between sender and recipient. S/MIME stands for Secure Multipurpose Internet Email Extensions. This encryption service is available for both the BlackBerry and desktop email platforms. Encrypted email arrives with a small key icon displayed over the message envelope. As I receive an email, I have to enter my BlackBerry password and private key to decrypt the message in order to view it. Not all of the emails I receive are encrypted. I was able to read emails sent from my CrackBerry account without entering in a private key.
Upon closing the decrypted message, your message becomes secure once again.
Nathanael Lineham, CEO of the DataLocking Company, explains why they chose the BlackBerry to sport their solutions.
"BlackBerry is the only, truly, secure end to end platform in the world. With Platforms like Palm, Windows Mobile, there's no real way to secure the info on the device itself. One of the features of the BlackBerry, is the ability to wipe your BlackBerry remotely. With the services available from the DataLocking company, you can also control the device end to end, control how the user uses a device, and only the BlackBerry can allow that. For example, you can turn the camera on or off on a user's BlackBerry camera from the server level. This allows us to provide complete end to end enforcement of company's privacy policies and security policies. Other platforms cannot support this level of security. We are in the business of delivering privacy, if there was a single breach, we would be out of business. If [the DataLocking Company] were deploying Palm, we'd have breaches everyday."
Picture this; you are in the middle of a Merger/Acquisition Team and you're about to close the biggest merger in your Company's history. You have critical information, within emails, saved on your BlackBerry. The merger could come crashing down if anyone was able to access these emails. Your BlackBerry is locked, so you feel your information is pretty secure. Is it really? No. If someone can get their hands on your beloved Berry, there is technology available to the world that will allow them to get any piece of information they want from it. If you were to lose your mobile, you'd probably be feeling quite sick to your stomach at this point. The DataLocking Company's solutions could remedy this situation, if it arises. All you have to do is order in a Kill, your BlackBerry that is.
Kill My BlackBerry - Contact the DataLocking Company and report the lost or stolen Berry. They, in turn, will wipe all of the information on your BlackBerry remotely and immediately.
Silent Kill - This feature is very similar to Kill My BlackBerry. This feature allows you to physically wipe your device. If you put in a variation of the password, that variation sends a notification, through an encrypted pass, to the company's back end and then the administrator kills the Berry for you.
Most may not use the Silent Kill feature. If you were in a situation where you were forced to open your email, perhaps for security reasons, this feature would be monumentally beneficial.
The DataLocking Company provides various Enterprise, Monthly and Pre-Paid DataLocked plans for you needs. I cannot quote strict pricing, as the pricing depends on the size of the Company in need, and the level of security it requires. The level of security may vary, from using on-shore or off-shore secure servers, encryption and closed loop communications. Closed loop means that messages can only be composed, delivered and received by members within a defined ring. No outside messages allowed. Companies may look at this closed loop very closely, to eliminate breaches and Company owned BlackBerry abuse. If required, they also have BlackBerrys available with the DataLocked solutions pre-installed.
The Three Pillars
As their website explains, it takes three disciplines to make complete privacy and anonymity, if necessary. The Three Pillars (from the website) are;
Technology: we apply advanced encryption service at 4096 BIT through servers to the Blackberry device. We ensure that the message residing on your Blackberry, its transmission and where it resides on the server are secure to all potential viewing points. Thus ensuring the intended recipient and its creator are the only ones that have access to view the message(s).
Legal: our solution is based around two key principals. One, servers are located offshore creating a jurisdiction hurdle for someone trying to order or subpoena our clients information. Two, resides with the actual ownership of the information. Neither you nor we own the encrypted information on the servers and thus neither can be forced to produce something we do not own or potentially have access too.
Corporate: our corporate policy's and products on how we identify a customer associated with what relevant information that we hold creates the third and binding attribute of true privacy. Our anonymity ability combined with the controlled rights and access of customer information are in concert with internal technology supporting your security."
Their biggest challenge they experience is showing a client where there potential breaches are and help them change the habits they have developed.
Lineham says "Before the age of email, if I wanted people to have access to a file, I would give them a key to a cabinet, I knew exactly who had access. The challenge is today, people you don't even know, within your company, have access. People haven't thought about the impact with changes they have made in technology. Many people from around the world could be looking at the same document and making changes simultaneously and collaborating to increase our ability to be productive in business. But, the challenge is, every one of these customers has not thought with that access how much of their security and confidentiality has been breached. . The way that we overcome it is with information, education; making them aware. The second thing is simple little things, like our technology."
Lineham said that they are not popular with IT people. "Because we ask the question that they don't want asked; Who other than you, Mr CEO, is reading your messages?" I don't see where the issue lies. I would be elated if the pressure of that level of security was taken off of my shoulders. Just as one bad apple could spoil the bunch, one shady employee could spoil an important decision.
The abilities of the services offered are strongest when your contacts are using them as well. It doesn't make sense to have only one party signed up while the other isn't. How can the conversation be private if not every recipient is secure? Make sure your contacts sign up as well to ensure there are no breaches.
I want to thank the DataLocking Company for their insight and the opportunity to experience truly secure, truly private email communication. As I said before, the demand for instant, simple access to information is high and we must ensure that the security around this must be even higher. The DataLocking Company will work with your company to define and enforce the security and privacy policies, based upon the laws and regulations of the industry.
"Policies are like tea bags," says Lineham, "you never know how strong they are until you put them in hot water."
To Nathanael Lineham, Peter McKinnon and Brent Huling, thank you for your time, passion and expertise. The services provided by the DataLocking Company, in my opinion, are critical and should be the foremost thought for each organization looking for secure communication.
For more information on the DataLocking Company, and their services, click here.
SPECIAL PROMOTION *** The DataLocking Company has a very special offer for members of CrackBerry.com. During the month of September, the DataLocking Company is offering a 1 month trial subscription, FREE for anyone who signs up with their service!!
Head over to www.datalocknow.com and take advantage of this offer. While you're there, why not take their privacy test and see how secure you really are?