File Encryption Online – Need for Online Data Encryption
File encryption online is important when you are dealing with cloud storage or when transmitting data over a network/Internet to protect it from hackers and unauthorized people.
As the need for online storage becomes important, file encryption online also becomes important. You may ask why online storage! The answer is - backup, file sharing, and message sharing (even emails). When you send an email, it also has to go through several servers before it reaches the recipient. If you do not encrypt the email, someone snooping on your computer may interpret the email as soon as it leaves your computer.
In cases of a large file, you often store it online and send the link to others with whom you wish to share the file. Some examples of such online storage systems are MSN SkyDrive, Office Live WorkSpace, and Google Docs. As these cloud storages contain important files, these service providers provide some sort of encryption so that your data is safe from hackers and unauthorized people. Managed remote online storage services offering Software as a Service (SAAS) take care that they encrypt the data even before it leaves your computer. The best examples of such SAAS are Mozy and Idrive.
Though there are several encryption methods, most of remote storage providers offer you TLS or SSL encryption. Even banks and other online gaming sites involved in money transfer employ the same technique to protect your data. You know you are using "online encryption" when you see that the "http" in URL changes to "https." Most of the time, you can also see a lock symbol against the URL or in the browser frame.
There are also some negatives to data encryption. The recipient needs to have the same software to decode the encrypted data and make it readable. Most of the email SAAS that offer encryption allow you to encrypt the data and create a password. When you send the email, these services store the encrypted email on their servers and send a message (with password) to the recipients. Recipients may use the link in the SAAS message in combination with the password to access the email. You will agree that this is a tedious process. We shall check out some free online encryption services on the next page that may prove beneficial to you.
In case of networks, sometimes it is possible that unauthorized people can access encrypted data packets. This is possible using a process that we call traffic analysis. The process studies the pattern of data packets and examines each in order to crack the encryption. Some software that help with traffic analysis are i2, Memex, Orion Scientific, and Visual Analytics. Wikipedia has a good article on cracking file encryption online using traffic analysis.
Before checking out the free online encryption services, let us take a bird's eye look at SSL and TSL.