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Dropbox. A More Secure Alternative?
Dropbox write at length about the security of their service, as well they should. Millions of us put all kinds of files in Dropbox. In fact, some 11,574 files are put in Dropbox every second. They take good care of your stuff - the files are encrypted in transit so nobody can read them as they're being uploaded or downloaded, they have rules about their staff not accessing your files and they will only divulge the contents of the files when obliged to do so by the law. But it seems that the laws that allow it in the UK and the USA may not be as tight as we expected. And with GCHQ and the NSA having reported abilities installed within these big organisations that allow recording of data even without consent, privacy is a legitimate concern. It's supposedly secure, but is that secure enough for you?
Obviously the answer depends on you. It does mean that ultimately that someone at Dropbox, or someone who can compel Dropbox to do something, can see your files, if they choose to.
So how about a more secure alternative? The problem has a pretty simple solution. Instead of just encrypting the file, sending it and then decrypting it at the other end, as Dropbox does, why not just encrypt the file before it leaves your computer, then just store the encrypted version on the providers server?
That's exactly what the Swiss team behind Wuala do. To use Wuala you install a small application on your computer, similar to what one does with Dropbox. As well as being able to access the files directly using whatever tool you currently use (Finder, File Explorer, etc) you can access the files through the Wuala application. The application also takes care of encrypting them and sending them to Wuala's servers which are located in Europe.
The big thing about Wuala is that those files are unreadable by anyone other than someone with your password. You have to make sure you set a good password of course, and be careful not to reveal it to anyone. And make sure you don't lose it, because if you do then all your data is gone forever - nobody at Wuala can recover it for you. But if you keep that password secure, you're golden. Even the names of the files you've stored aren't visible to anyone with the password.
The only way that I can see that your files could be compromised is if the computer in to which you're typing your Wuala password is compromised. Spyware that tracks your keystrokes is readily available, so you need to be sure that no such software is on your machine.
Does it work? It certainly does. I've only started using it recently, but so far, so good. It does pretty much what Dropbox does, but provides far higher levels of confidentiality. It's free for storing up to 5Gb - which unless you're storing lots of "confidential" videos or photographs is probably enough for most people. Various upgrades are available to provide more storage, though when I tried to check their website just now it seemed they're having some issues and I couldn't get prices.
Have you been looking for a more secure alternative to Evernote?