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Which data should always be encrypted

Encryption | 19. JUN 2018

IDs, contracts and photos should be protectedThere is data that is particularly susceptible to fraud. Non-encrypted email attachments, lost laptops or hacked cloud accounts promise scammers rich booty. For cyber-criminals, relevant data is easily filtered, even in mighty data streams.

Most susceptible to identity abuse are

… personal data serving user identification.

Definitely encrypt your ID or driver’s license after scanning. This data can be easily stolen and used for online shopping on behalf of unknown persons. Goods are intercepted during delivery or delivered directly to another address. The only thing the ID owner receives is the bill.

In addition to encryption, it is recommended to black out machine-readable entries on the scan or photograph. Making a copy and blacking out the unnecessary entries before scanning will also do the job.

In general personal data can be used for various types of fraud. That is part of the reason why the European General Data Protection Regulation (EU GDPR) was implemented. The EU GDPR demands the protection of personal data by encryption and has been valid since the end of May.

… signed documents such as contracts, applications, etc.

These days, with the appropriate software, it’s incredibly easy to isolate and extract signatures on documents and insert them onto other documents. Transmitting non-encrypted documents with your signature via scanning or photograph leaves you wide-open for fraud that can go far beyond your online activities. The difference between an original signature and copies or prints is barely discernable, even on color printers. Your signature in the wrong hands is as good as a blank check.

Confidential data such as pictures or health information are manna for blackmailers and staunch support for phishing attacks

When revealing photos or a doctor’s attest with sensitive health data are fished from the data stream, you are vulnerable to attempted blackmail. There’s nothing futuristic about automated identification of a person on a photo – this is our reality today.

And don’t forget the omnipresent threat of phishing. The more confidential information an attacker pulls out of the hat, the more credible his story. Trusting people then reveal their login data or transfer money to third, unknown parties.

Personal identification data, documents such as contracts and applications as well as any confidential information you would rather not share with the rest of the world, should always be encrypted. This also applies to protecting others’ data and, for example, making sure the photos from your last stag party are encrypted before you share them.

When in doubt, encrypt! It’s incredibly easy with Z1 CryptNow!

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