It seems fitting that our first post on the Data Confidence blog is one to explain the rationale behind developing our file encryption software, SmartEncrypt. I’ve already spent several years developing cyber-security products, so this is not our first software development and I don’t expect it to be our last.
The data loss protection problem
I’ve been working with IT professionals and owners of businesses of all sizes for some time now and the most concerning trend is the lack of confidence they have when it comes to protecting their businesses from cyber disaster.
We live in a world of clouds, mobility, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), data breaches, data theft and compliance. It’s an enormous challenge, if not almost impossible for many Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to stay secure and meet their compliance requirements with minimal IT budgets. More users and devices mean more risk. Each internet-connected device added to the organisation creates another potential opportunity for data loss.
To me, it seemed simple. I’ve always been a strong supporter of encryption as a logical solution to protect data. After all, it is the technology the military and banking institutes use to protect themselves, so why aren’t SMEs encrypting their data? Even though encryption is the best file protection technology available, SMEs just don’t seem to want to use it.
I was really curious to find out why.
File encryption products for SME use are hard to find
Looking at existing file encryption products, it’s clear that there are plenty geared towards consumers and enterprises, but not many to service SMEs. In the consumer market, there is a wide choice of encryption products with an acceptable level of usability. These are great for individuals wanting to encrypt their documents, photos and videos every now and then, but they don’t deliver for businesses who need daily use and for multiple users.
When I researched encryption products specifically for the SME market, I could only find a couple. These were clearly consumer applications retrofitted for business use. The biggest concerns with these products are the amount of control given to the user and that they also change the way encrypted files are accessed. This makes them difficult for multiple users to share data in a business environment. These products significantly change the users’ workflow creating a clumsy experience, far from ideal for long term administration and business scaling.
Enterprise file encryption products are highly complex, expensive and time-consuming to deploy and maintain, making them difficult to achieve wide-scale adoption for SMEs.
It was clear that the benefits of encryption were being missed or not even considered for millions of SMEs and there needed to be a solution to this problem.
The SmartEncrypt file encryption solution
Being a firm believer that encryption works best when no-one notices it, the goal was clear: Create a file encryption product so simple that anybody can set up and use; Create invisible encryption without changing business workflow that is easy to manage at scale.
I’m glad to say we achieved our goal. SmartEncrypt is seamless and effective file encryption for SMEs. Workflows are unchanged for users. It is simple to set-up and use and is accessible to even the smallest of businesses, providing them with the protection they need for peace of mind.