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Old 21.06.2011, 22:01
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Privacy, Security on Internet

Dropbox one of the most popular services for storing your file "in the cloud" brings again under the limelight the security & data theft on Internet.
They managed to have 24millions account unprotected during 4 hours....nice! Ahhh all this cloud computing & security discussions.
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Old 21.06.2011, 22:11
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

Have been umming and aahing about using this service. Still can't quite get my head around this whole concept of cloud computing, especially where security of info is concerned. Will continue deliberating methinks...
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Old 21.06.2011, 22:11
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Dropbox one of the most popular services for storing your file "in the cloud" brings again under the limelight the security & data theft on Internet.
They managed to have 24millions account unprotected during 4 hours....nice! Ahhh all this cloud computing & security discussions.
it was only when a user notified them that they figured out what was happening.

no way i would trust storing anything on dropbox.
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Old 21.06.2011, 22:17
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Have been umming and aahing about using this service. Still can't quite get my head around this whole concept of cloud computing, especially where security of info is concerned. Will continue deliberating methinks...
Its brilliant. Best on line free storage out there. Sign up you'll never look back.
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Old 21.06.2011, 22:28
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Its brilliant. Best on line free storage out there. Sign up you'll never look back.
Thanks MikeB.

Several of my business colleagues swear by it and are wondering what I'm waiting for!

I signed up for it some weeks ago but just haven't used it yet. I guess no system is going to be 100% fail safe all the time...
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Old 21.06.2011, 22:51
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

Another vote for Dropbox. It has a beautiful interface that just works.

You install it, and it creates a folder called Dropbox on your local drive. Anything you drop in there appears almost instantly on the server which is accessible from any other online computer -- as long as that user has your login details.

If you install the desktop software on another machine (say your work PC), you can save files to either computer and they instantly sync with each other. No more tedious flash drive backups at the end of a work day. (And if we're worried about security, surely a flash drive is far more loseable than your data on a server somewhere).

For a while I had the free 2 GB account but just recently upgraded to the 50 GB account which is $9.99 a month.

The security problem at the weekend is not good news, but I say two things -- first, they seem very open about admitting it and apologising, which is the sort of attitude I would expect from people who make such user-friendly and efficient software. Second, much as I like and support the idea of cloud computing, let's face it, it's not advisable to store your bank details or all your passwords in a file, or any other intimate/precious details on someone else's computer.

But I happily use these facilities for storing 99% of my files. If someone is that desperate to scroll through my family snaps or MP3s or (non-confidential) work files etc. then they need help.

In the interests of balance, I'd also recommend SugarSync. Very similar to Dropbox with an even bigger (5 GB) free account.
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Old 21.06.2011, 23:13
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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...

In the interests of balance, I'd also recommend SugarSync. Very similar to Dropbox with an even bigger (5 GB) free account.
Thanks PeterG for your helpful insights into DropBox.

Am now looking at SugarSync too.

Cheers.
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Old 21.06.2011, 23:17
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

Just to add if you do want to keep pictures of your illicit affair with the local vicar on it as well, you can use any number of personal encryption programs such as PGP to protect those files. As with all cloud computing though, currently it is more suited to non sensetive data.

Last edited by Mikers; 21.06.2011 at 23:32.
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Old 21.06.2011, 23:23
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Just to add if you do want to keep pictures of your ilk it affair with the local vicar on it as well, you can use any number of personal encryption programs such as PGP to protect those files. As with all cloud computing though, currently it is more suited to non sensetive data.
Nah. No worries on that. Don't go to church.

Non sensitive data it is!
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Old 22.06.2011, 08:46
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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(...)
But I happily use these facilities for storing 99% of my files. If someone is that desperate to scroll through my family snaps or MP3s or (non-confidential) work files etc. then they need help.

(...).
Agree with you....but given what happens with facebook photos, that employers check future employee background, that it's possible to make face detection based search on huge databases...don't you fear that your "digital" personality (incl. your personal photos of parties, events, etc...) may be misused and could harm you in the future if found on a site that does not reflect your opinion or moral choices?

Last edited by MrVertigo; 22.06.2011 at 08:58.
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Old 22.06.2011, 09:25
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Agree with you....but given what happens with facebook photos, that employers check future employee background, that it's possible to make face detection based search on huge databases...don't you fear that your "digital" personality (incl. your personal photos of parties, events, etc...) may be misused and could harm you in the future if found on a site that does not reflect your opinion or moral choices?
Not really, it's as per the earlier response: If your photographs, documents, music files or whatever are items that you do not want other people to see, then use encryption to store them if storing them on the internet, otherwise keep them local. The fact that an employer can look you up on facebook or whatever is just a 21st century thing - its unavoidable.
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Old 22.06.2011, 10:22
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

Is it technically possible for an online storage provider to provide encryption "out of the box" using nothing that is stored on their side?

That is, you enter a password via SSL and everything you send is stored in an encrypted form? Your password is not stored on their server in plain text so there is nothing for hackers to bother taking?

If it's possible, then I'm surprised that it's not the default offering.
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Old 22.06.2011, 10:32
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Is it technically possible for an online storage provider to provide encryption "out of the box" using nothing that is stored on their side?

That is, you enter a password via SSL and everything you send is stored in an encrypted form? Your password is not stored on their server in plain text so there is nothing for hackers to bother taking?

If it's possible, then I'm surprised that it's not the default offering.
not to my knowledge. Local encryption before sending is the pre-requesite for privacy. Ideally you'd encrypt with a symmetric key protected by a pair of public-private key.
Other problems i see with these "cloud storage":
- if you delete a file....are you sure it's really deleted?
- if they go bankrupt/disappear....is there an escrow or a way to get back your data (i am thinking more for business data).
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Old 22.06.2011, 11:06
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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Is it technically possible for an online storage provider to provide encryption "out of the box" using nothing that is stored on their side?

That is, you enter a password via SSL and everything you send is stored in an encrypted form? Your password is not stored on their server in plain text so there is nothing for hackers to bother taking?

If it's possible, then I'm surprised that it's not the default offering.
yes, it is possible, but for various reasons, providers choose not to do this. for example, some apply de-duplication technology to reduce their storage costs and everybody encrypting will increase their storage requirements.

others want to data-mine/provide value added services which require analysis of the files you upload.
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Old 22.06.2011, 11:08
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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yes, it is possible, but for various reasons, providers choose not to do this. (...).
any references, links ? I am interested.
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Old 22.06.2011, 11:35
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

agree with the pro-dropbox-voices

before dropbox: sending hundreds of empty emails with my work attached in order to save the stuff properly...

with dropbox: save it the "usual" way. just that it's stored better and easy to share same time. Great

I'm not sure about the safety of dropbox,but as long as the data isn't sensitive, I'd definitley recommend it.

like it very much!
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Old 22.06.2011, 12:39
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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yes, it is possible, but for various reasons, providers choose not to do this. for example, some apply de-duplication technology to reduce their storage costs and everybody encrypting will increase their storage requirements.

others want to data-mine/provide value added services which require analysis of the files you upload.
are you sure about this ? As Mr Vertigo says, how would an external provider encrypt files but give sole decryption rights to the user and not themselves be able to decrypt the files ? It would be impossible surely as the private key would have to be handed over to the user and therefore it is the user applying the encryption. I see that a provider could offer immediate encryption but not in a way where they could not ultimately decrypt the file themselves.
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Old 22.06.2011, 12:54
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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are you sure about this ? As Mr Vertigo says, how would an external provider encrypt files but give sole decryption rights to the user and not themselves be able to decrypt the files ? It would be impossible surely as the private key would have to be handed over to the user and therefore it is the user applying the encryption. I see that a provider could offer immediate encryption but not in a way where they could not ultimately decrypt the file themselves.
i had ran an online-backup service that the user hold the key of encryption for their own files and if they lost it, I can do nothing to decrypt it for them; so it is in use.
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Old 22.06.2011, 13:13
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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are you sure about this ? As Mr Vertigo says, how would an external provider encrypt files but give sole decryption rights to the user and not themselves be able to decrypt the files ?
by doing the encryption client-side.
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Old 22.06.2011, 13:27
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Re: Privacy, Security on Internet

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by doing the encryption client-side.
yes, which is what was described before, i.e. the answer to the posed question can a cloud provider encrypt your data and not have access to it, then its "im afraid not", any encryption is done locally.

Im not being niggly, I was genuinely interested as I couldnt see a model which would enable server side one time encryption allowing the client to decrypt without doing the obvious and giving hte client the private key.
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