Sookasa & Dropbox, A Marriage Made In Heaven (And The Cloud)
Almost a year ago, I posted in this column on accessing and sharing files remotely and securely. It involved mating two identical USB keys, separating them and then attaching each of the two separated halves to computers that have a need to securely share files across the internet. I liked this solution because it provided a way to securely share files, something that is lacking in Dropbox. Back then, my advice to ALJs was to avoid Dropbox because of possible hacking risks.
Imagine my delight when I stumbled upon a vendor at LegalTech 2013 NY that has a solution to the Dropbox problem?! While using Dropbox, by itself, it still problematic, the clever folks at Sookasa created a Dropbox addon that creates a secure folder within your Dropbox account. Anything stored in that folder will be encrypted. In other words, it transforms Dropbox from a security risk into an enterprise grade secure file access and sharing solution.
Sookasa allows you to securely share and collaborate on files with colleagues and customers. By placing files and directories in the secure folder on Dropbox, files get automatically encrypted and can be safely stored in the cloud. By giving Sookasa access to your Dropbox account, it handles the magic of encrypting your files, yet keeping your Dropbox data out of their servers and your encryption keys out of Dropbox’s servers!
You can explicitly provide permission to anyone that needs to access or share your files. They can then be safely shared using a shared Dropbox folder, sent with an email service like Gmail or even posted as a public link. After you have finished working with a colleague or customer, you can revoke their access to your encrypted files.
Sookasa does more than simply encrypt files. It will also provide an audit trail, can track files, and can allow administrators to centrally retrieve deleted files and reconstruct older versions through the Sookasa web interface, using Dropbox’s file recovery. Since Sookasa, along with Dropbox, can also run on tablets and smart phones, in case a device is lost or stolen, Sookasa allows administrators to block a specific device from accessing encrypted files. Very forward thinking.
Sookasa supports local encryption on Windows and Mac. So if you drag a file/folder into the secure folder, the files will get encrypted locally on the computer before they are synced to the cloud. Also, when you open files (by double-clicking on them), the files will open in a local cache, instead of in Dropbox. When you’re editing a file (and saving new versions), Sookasa will immediately catch all the saves in the local cache and re-encrypt the file locally back to the secure folder. The website has a tutorial (just in case you need it) and a lot of information about the benefits of using Sookasa with Dropbox.
Sookasa will be available publicly this coming June 2013, so there’s no firm pricing yet (though, from what I was told, it sounds like it will be very affordable). In the meantime, if you’d like to give the app a try, contact Sookasa to sign up. I’ve been using it for a couple of weeks and love it.
For more information, Sookasa may be reached by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
No consideration of any kind has been accepted for this review. The opinions expressed herein are solely the author’s and do not necessarily reflect those of NYSALJA.