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New encryption software for files containing sensitive data

ITMS has reviewed and approved a new product for members of staff needing to send personal data or confidential information outside of the University. The software is available from the ITMS Service Desk for installation onto DMU computers.

AES Encrypt is simple and fast to use – simply right click on a file and add a password and the software will create a new file that cannot be opened without the password.

If you’re interested to know the techy details, AES Encrypt encodes the file at AES 256 standard. AES stands for Advanced Encryption Standard, and 256 refers to the length of the key used in the algorithm. You can read more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Encryption_Standard

As for the security that AES 256 will provide us, it’s probably sufficient to point out that the US Government has stated:

The design and strength of all key lengths of the AES algorithm (i.e., 128, 192 and 256) are sufficient to protect classified information up to the SECRET level. TOP SECRET information will require use of either the 192 or 256 key lengths.

Please note that AES Encrypt requires the recipient to also have a copy of the software installed.

For easy to follow instructions on how to use this service see the section ‘Encrypting Documents’: https://sites.google.com/a/myapps.dmu.ac.uk/isas/policies

 

Posted in Data Protection Act, Information Security.

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