Archive for December 22nd, 2011

Encryption and User Data

December 22nd, 2011

We’re all creating large amounts of online data about ourselves. How should that data be treated? One key element is encryption, and the ability to store data in a format which is not easily read by people who aren’t authorized to do so. “Encryption” gets complicated pretty quickly, and the cryptography which underlie can also be complex. As a result, it’s easy to think of “encryption” as the answer, thinking that my data is safe if it’s encrypted.

My colleague Ben Adida has written a very helpful post about the value of encryption. He describes why is part of the solution for protecting data, but isn’t a complete solution. It’s a great post because it respects those of us who aren’t cryptographers and provides a thoughtful, understandable outline of the problem space.

Figuring out better ways to handle user data will be on our minds a great deal in the future. I was happy to see this post because it helps me think about the issues in a smarter way.

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