[ISN] Encryption Software Protects PalmPilots

From: mea culpa (jerichoat_private)
Date: Wed Feb 03 1999 - 13:08:19 PST

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    Forwarded From: <anon>
    February 2, 1999
    Encryption Software Protects PalmPilots
    Filed at 7:48 p.m. EST
    By John Gartner for TechWeb, CMPnet
    Jaws Technologies, based in Calgary, Canada, released a software utility
    this week that protects PalmPilot III data using encryption far surpassing
    U.S. restrictions.
    Jaws L5 Data Encryption -- PDA Edition can be used to encrypt sensitive
    data such as passwords, credit cards, or personal finance information
    stored on the popular PalmPilot III personal digital assistants. Once data
    is encrypted and secured by a password, it cannot be transmitted to other
    The software requires only 35 kilobytes of memory on PalmPilots and can be
    used in conjunction with desktop versions of Jaws' encryption software.
    Once the software is installed, data is automatically encrypted and
    decrypted at a rate of 1 megabyte per second when the system is powered on
    or off.
    The theft of corporate portable-computing devices is becoming an
    increasing risk factor, according to analysts. "Whether a user is
    accessing data on workstation or coordinating files with a PDA, or
    hand-held computer, the importance of secure data spans across many
    corporate functions and levels," said Greg Naderi, IT market analyst at
    Frost & Sullivan.
    The number of PDAs grew by 177 percent 1998 to $531.3 million, according
    to Frost & Sullivan. "With growth patterns such as this, data encryption
    is certain to become more vital to the corporate infrastructure," Naderi
    Designing a small-footprint encryption system with acceptable performance
    has been a challenge for encryption vendors, Naderi said.
    Jaws Technologies has applied for patents for their technology, which
    requires more permutations to crack than the scientific community
    currently has a number for, said Robert Kubbernus, CEO of Jaws. Kubbernus
    said he saw an opportunity when he realized the risk he took when saving
    data on his own PDA. "We pulled the PalmPilot apart and realized that it
    was very insecure," he said. 
    The U.S. government restricts software for export to 56-bit encryption in
    most uses, and 128-bit for specific circumstances, but does not prohibit
    important software using higher encryption. The 'L5' in the product name
    refers to level 5, or the U.S. government's highest rating for security,
    said Kubbernus. 
    Jaws L5 Data Encryption -- PDA Edition will be available for download for
    $19.95 and is being sold for $1 for the first two weeks of February from
    sites such as Beyond.com and BuyDirect.com.
    The Professional Edition for Windows shipped in July of 1998 and can be
    used to share data between desktops, laptops, and the PalmPilot. 
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