Cryptomator: we talked to Christian Schmickler

Emil: Who are you and what do you do?

Christian Schmickler: We are Skymatic, a German startup with a founding team of four privacy-passionate enthusiasts. We develop Cryptomator, the open source software that helps everyone protect their files and privacy in cloud storages. You can follow our development activities via our GitHub repository at https://github.com/cryptomator/cryptomator.

What is Cryptomator and how can I install and use it?

Cryptomator is a client-side (end-to-end) encryption software optimized for cloud storage. It encrypts files locally on the user’s computer or smartphone before they are uploaded to a cloud storage – such as ownCloud. The software (for Win, Mac, Linux) and apps (for iOS, Android) can be downloaded from our website https://cryptomator.org, the App Store, and Google Play.

Against which threat model does Cryptomator protect me?

Client-side encryption is the best way to ensure the protection of confidentiality of files in any cloud storage. Without client-side encryption, it is often not clear a) who (e.g., administrators of the cloud provider) has access to your files, and b) whether your files are sufficiently protected against outside attackers. If a Cryptomator-encrypted file fell into an attacker’s hands, it would be virtually impossible to decrypt it without knowing the password chosen by the owner of the file.

How is Cryptomator different than other encryption tools?

Cryptomator is the first software of its kind that is both open source and easy to use. It encrypts every file individually (no containers!) to retain the benefits of a cloud storage. Besides, it is available for all major operating systems to provide access to your encrypted files from every device.

In which direction do you want the internet to evolve?

We want to contribute to the internet being a secure network in which personal rights – such as the right to privacy – are protected. We believe that the opportunities provided by digitalization can only be harnessed if people and companies have a justified trust in the confidentiality of their data. Since transparency fosters trust, we believe in the idea of open source and would like to encourage others to pursue open source business models as well.

Nice, do you have something else to say to the community?

The protection of privacy and data security is a collective challenge and it needs everyone’s commitment. Thus, everybody should be aware of their responsibility not only for their privacy protection and security but also for everybody else’s. Happy crypting with Cryptomator! 🙂

 

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