Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Security Authors: Jim Liddle, Brian Vandegrift, Elizabeth White, Peter Silva, Wade Williamson

Related Topics: Cloud Expo, Security

Cloud Expo: News Item

Trusting Data in the Cloud Is About Losing a Key

The online storage and collaboration market has been hot

The online storage and collaboration market has been hot, with early market entrants Dropbox, Box.net and YouSendIt appearing to have taken the initial lead in providing individuals and businesses with the ability to easily store, share, and send large files between multiple parties.

In the spirit of secure collaboration, at this year's RSA event, Ftopia and GuardTime announced a partnership that hopes to shake up the market a bit by raising even higher the pressing question of one's ability to trust their precious data in the cloud. To answer this question, the Ftopia service is designed to allow businesses to securely collaborate by sharing their files anywhere they want over the Internet without having to rely on trust. Rather, they provide the service with built-in data integrity features that utilize mathematics as its form of proof.

Ftopia does cloud-based data collaboration and storage, and together with GuardTime, a cloud security company, signed a deal to offer the market a provably secure collaboration and storage service. Ftopia uses GuardTime's keyless signature technology to digitally sign the clients' data as it is stored in Ftopia rooms.

As described in the public announcement, GuardTime's Keyless Signature technology provides proof of signing authority, time of the signature, and lifelong integrity for data stored in the cloud and in transit between business collaborators. The signature never expires and its verification is based solely on mathematics, eliminating the need for secrets or keys and the unwieldy management associated with traditional PKI technologies that fail in the cloud.

During an interview with Ftopia CEO Philippe Honigman, I was able to ask him what prompted the creation of the partnership and his new release. "As more information moves to the cloud as the primary place of storage, concerns about trust and security are growing as well," he said. "Traditional, defensive security measures, such as intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, strict network access control policies, or even the tried and true anti-malware technologies, are not enough anymore. Business customers are more likely to entrust their information to a third party when they know for certain - more specifically, when they can prove - that their data has not been altered in any way."

After a quick run-through of the capabilities with Honigman, the workflow appears to remain simple and seemingly unchanged. There is no additional action for the users to take on either end of the file sharing transaction. Each file gets its own signature. The signature is a small file that is automatically created and saved alongside the signed file. If the user wants proof that the file in question has not changed since the exact point in time that it was uploaded, they simply collect the file and its signature and use the verification tool provided by GuardTime to perform the comparison. If the signature can be verified, the file is guaranteed to be the same exact file and can be confirmed that it is that exact file from the exact point in time for which it was signed. If the signature cannot be verified, then the file cannot be guaranteed to be the same.

"The solution is both simple and powerful," said Honigman. "On the surface, it would appear that all that GuardTime is providing us is the ability to timestamp or simply sign a file. But, because the signature is keyless, meaning nobody is forced to manage any keys or keep any secrets, the client can get undeniable proof that the file has not been tampered with, not even by Ftopia."

GuardTime CEO Mike Gault says, "We solved the problem of trust by removing the reliance on keys or secrets to prove that the data remains intact. This is accomplished through a series of concatenated SHA-256 hashes for each file that are used to create and destroy a Merkle tree of hashes every second since the beginning of Unix time, 1970."

According to Guardtime, the resulting root hash, referred to by the company as the "Integrity Code", is published monthly in publications such as the Financial Times. To verify the integrity of the data, all one needs is the published Integrity Code, the original file, and its corresponding signature file. With these three pieces, any organization can use the tools provided or, if they are really paranoid, they could do the reverse hash function mathematics to prove that the file remains intact. In short, GuardTime claims that there is no need to rely on any tool, or any third party to gain proof.

It will be interesting to keep an eye on Ftopia to see how their clients use this feature. It seems that the value becomes painfully apparent when an organization is required by law or regulation to provide proof that their data has remained intact - especially if their own integrity was being questioned. Hopefully this is not the case for most organizations. Which company would want to get all twisted up in court because they couldn't prove they weren't involved in a coverup? I feel safe going out on a limb to say none of them.

More Stories By Victor Cruz

Victor Cruz is a writer whose articles have appeared in American Venture, Cloud Computing Journal, CommPro.biz, CSO Magazine, Communications News, Computer Technology Review, eSecurity Planet, Harvard Review, Medical Design Technology, and WebSecurity Journal. He has advised some 50 IT companies in the past 20 years on their marketing strategies. You can reach him at vcruz[at]mediapr.net

@ThingsExpo Stories
The world's leading Cloud event, Cloud Expo has launched Microservices Journal on the SYS-CON.com portal, featuring over 19,000 original articles, news stories, features, and blog entries. DevOps Journal is focused on this critical enterprise IT topic in the world of cloud computing. Microservices Journal offers top articles, news stories, and blog posts from the world's well-known experts and guarantees better exposure for its authors than any other publication. Follow new article posts on Twitter at @MicroservicesE
SYS-CON Events announced today the IoT Bootcamp – Jumpstart Your IoT Strategy, being held June 9–10, 2015, in conjunction with 16th Cloud Expo and Internet of @ThingsExpo at the Javits Center in New York City. This is your chance to jumpstart your IoT strategy. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the IoT Bootcamp is not just based on presentations but includes hands-on demos and walkthroughs. We will introduce you to a variety of Do-It-Yourself IoT platforms including Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBone, Spark and Intel Edison. You will also get an overview of cloud technologies s...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SafeLogic has been named “Bag Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. SafeLogic provides security products for applications in mobile and server/appliance environments. SafeLogic’s flagship product CryptoComply is a FIPS 140-2 validated cryptographic engine designed to secure data on servers, workstations, appliances, mobile devices, and in the Cloud.
Wearable technology was dominant at this year’s International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) , and MWC was no exception to this trend. New versions of favorites, such as the Samsung Gear (three new products were released: the Gear 2, the Gear 2 Neo and the Gear Fit), shared the limelight with new wearables like Pebble Time Steel (the new premium version of the company’s previously released smartwatch) and the LG Watch Urbane. The most dramatic difference at MWC was an emphasis on presenting wearables as fashion accessories and moving away from the original clunky technology associated with t...
After making a doctor’s appointment via your mobile device, you receive a calendar invite. The day of your appointment, you get a reminder with the doctor’s location and contact information. As you enter the doctor’s exam room, the medical team is equipped with the latest tablet containing your medical history – he or she makes real time updates to your medical file. At the end of your visit, you receive an electronic prescription to your preferred pharmacy and can schedule your next appointment.
Containers and microservices have become topics of intense interest throughout the cloud developer and enterprise IT communities. Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 16th Cloud Expo at the Javits Center in New York June 9-11 will find fresh new content in a new track called PaaS | Containers & Microservices Containers are not being considered for the first time by the cloud community, but a current era of re-consideration has pushed them to the top of the cloud agenda. With the launch of Docker's initial release in March of 2013, interest was revved up several notches. Then late last...
The WebRTC Summit 2014 New York, to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, announces that its Call for Papers is open. Topics include all aspects of improving IT delivery by eliminating waste through automated business models leveraging cloud technologies. WebRTC Summit is co-located with 16th International Cloud Expo, @ThingsExpo, Big Data Expo, and DevOps Summit.
SOA Software has changed its name to Akana. With roots in Web Services and SOA Governance, Akana has established itself as a leader in API Management and is expanding into cloud integration as an alternative to the traditional heavyweight enterprise service bus (ESB). The company recently announced that it achieved more than 90% year-over-year growth. As Akana, the company now addresses the evolution and diversification of SOA, unifying security, management, and DevOps across SOA, APIs, microservices, and more.
GENBAND has announced that SageNet is leveraging the Nuvia platform to deliver Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) to its large base of retail and enterprise customers. Nuvia’s cloud-based solution provides SageNet’s customers with a full suite of business communications and collaboration tools. Two large national SageNet retail customers have recently signed up to deploy the Nuvia platform and the company will continue to sell the service to new and existing customers. Nuvia’s capabilities include HD voice, video, multimedia messaging, mobility, conferencing, Web collaboration, deskt...
SYS-CON Media announced today that @WebRTCSummit Blog, the largest WebRTC resource in the world, has been launched. @WebRTCSummit Blog offers top articles, news stories, and blog posts from the world's well-known experts and guarantees better exposure for its authors than any other publication. @WebRTCSummit Blog can be bookmarked ▸ Here @WebRTCSummit conference site can be bookmarked ▸ Here
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cisco, the worldwide leader in IT that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate, has been named “Gold Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cisco makes amazing things happen by connecting the unconnected. Cisco has shaped the future of the Internet by becoming the worldwide leader in transforming how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Cisco and our partners are building the platform for the Internet of Everything by connecting the...
Temasys has announced senior management additions to its team. Joining are David Holloway as Vice President of Commercial and Nadine Yap as Vice President of Product. Over the past 12 months Temasys has doubled in size as it adds new customers and expands the development of its Skylink platform. Skylink leads the charge to move WebRTC, traditionally seen as a desktop, browser based technology, to become a ubiquitous web communications technology on web and mobile, as well as Internet of Things compatible devices.
SYS-CON Events announced today that robomq.io will exhibit at SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. robomq.io is an interoperable and composable platform that connects any device to any application. It helps systems integrators and the solution providers build new and innovative products and service for industries requiring monitoring or intelligence from devices and sensors.
Docker is an excellent platform for organizations interested in running microservices. It offers portability and consistency between development and production environments, quick provisioning times, and a simple way to isolate services. In his session at DevOps Summit at 16th Cloud Expo, Shannon Williams, co-founder of Rancher Labs, will walk through these and other benefits of using Docker to run microservices, and provide an overview of RancherOS, a minimalist distribution of Linux designed expressly to run Docker. He will also discuss Rancher, an orchestration and service discovery platf...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Vitria Technology, Inc. will exhibit at SYS-CON’s @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Vitria will showcase the company’s new IoT Analytics Platform through live demonstrations at booth #330. Vitria’s IoT Analytics Platform, fully integrated and powered by an operational intelligence engine, enables customers to rapidly build and operationalize advanced analytics to deliver timely business outcomes for use cases across the industrial, enterprise, and consumer segments.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Solgenia will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Solgenia is the global market leader in Cloud Collaboration and Cloud Infrastructure software solutions. Designed to “Bridge the Gap” between Personal and Professional Social, Mobile and Cloud user experiences, our solutions help large and medium-sized organizations dr...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Liaison Technologies, a leading provider of data management and integration cloud services and solutions, has been named "Silver Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Liaison Technologies is a recognized market leader in providing cloud-enabled data integration and data management solutions to break down complex information barriers, enabling enterprises to make smarter decisions, faster.
@ThingsExpo has been named the Top 5 Most Influential M2M Brand by Onalytica in the ‘Machine to Machine: Top 100 Influencers and Brands.' Onalytica analyzed the online debate on M2M by looking at over 85,000 tweets to provide the most influential individuals and brands that drive the discussion. According to Onalytica the "analysis showed a very engaged community with a lot of interactive tweets. The M2M discussion seems to be more fragmented and driven by some of the major brands present in the M2M space. This really allows some room for influential individuals to create more high value inter...
The list of ‘new paradigm’ technologies that now surrounds us appears to be at an all time high. From cloud computing and Big Data analytics to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and the Internet of Things (IoT), today we have to deal with what the industry likes to call ‘paradigm shifts’ at every level of IT. This is disruption; of course, we understand that – change is almost always disruptive.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Akana, formerly SOA Software, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Akana’s comprehensive suite of API Management, API Security, Integrated SOA Governance, and Cloud Integration solutions helps businesses accelerate digital transformation by securely extending their reach across multiple channels – mobile, cloud and Internet of Things. Akana enables enterprises to share data as APIs, connect and integrate applications, drive part...