Cryptoheaven is one of those applications that is, as its name suggests, heaven-sent.
I first discovered it when we were looking for a secure application for storing and transferring personal medical files among a virtual staff of insurance underwriters. The data was highly sensitive and private in nature and we needed a way to ensure that the data would be encrypted from cradle to grave, so to speak. And we needed cost-effectiveness.
While there are lots of file storage services with SSL encryption, few of them offer the encryption of files that are stored on the server. This is where Cryptoheaven shines. And from a security perspective, Cryptoheaven’s claims are verifiable because they publish the details of their cryptographic system. When it comes to security, the “black box” approach is less secure because it cannot be proven. For more details on how Cryptoheaven does it, see their Security FAQ. For a bit of extra security (as if we needed it), we would often post Acrobat PDF files with passwords.
In addition to an easy to use drag-and-drop file transfer system, Cryptoheaven offers encrypted email and Internet Messenger (IM) chat applications. This is a nice feature if you are working with a virtual team on sensitive private information.
Another way that Cryptoheaven can be used is for a simple secure payment solution. Since the email is encrypted, you can direct manually created web forms used for collecting payment information to your Cryptoheaven email account. A notification email will arrive (in your unsecured, regular email account) saying you have a secure message. Open Cryptoheaven and voila – there are the payment details from your web form ready for printing. Couple this with an SSL hosted form and you have a secure ecommerce solution for under $100/year.
Cryptoheaven is built on Java and can be downloaded or run as a web page (slower). It offers a low-cost personal version or similarly cost-effective business version.
While I have used and am familiar with Cryptoheaven, there are a growing number of other services popping up. Check them out.