Cloud encryption solution Boxcryptor launches local key feature

Martin Brinkmann
Sep 24, 2013
Encryption, Security

We have covered the cloud encryption solution Boxcryptor before here on Ghacks. First in our initial review of the service back in 2011, and then again when the company released its Chrome plugin.

Boxcryptor at its core provides you with the means to encrypt data that you want to host in the cloud. It is compatible with a variety of popular solutions including Dropbox, Box and Google Drive and could not be easier to use.

It adds a folder to the local cloud storage directory that gets synchronized with the service just like any other. The main difference here is that all files that you move into the folder get encrypted by default so that they cannot be read by the hosting provider at all.

Back when Boxcryptor started, it was only available for Windows. As of today, it is also available for Mac OS X, Linux, the mobile operating systems Android and iOS, and Google Chrome.

Boxcryptor: local encryption keys

Up until now, Boxcryptor users had to use encryption keys created by Boxcryptor. This changes with today's update as it is now possible to create custom keys instead. This comes in the wake of the revelation of a potential security leak of RSA by the NSA.

To use the new feature, select "Use Boxcryptor with a local account" when you launch the application on your system. The differences between local and remote accounts are explained here at the top.

Boxcryptor account

  • Share files with other Boxcryptor users
  • Easily use Boxcryptor on any device
  • You can export your keys at any time

Local account

  • No sharing functionality
  • You are responsible to mange your key file
  • Keys are secured with your password
  • Can be converted to a Boxcryptor account at any time

If you select to create a local account, you are taken to a second page that stresses the importance of the key file and password. You need both to encrypt your data, and if you lose access to one, won't be able to access the data anymore.

You can either use an existing Boxcryptor key in the local account creation process, or create a new one.

The Chrome extension was updated today as well. It now acts independent from local installations, which means that you do not need a local installation anymore to access files on the cloud hosting provider's website. All that is left then is to set a password for the account which you need to remember as well as it is used to decrypt the data in conjunction with the key.

Closing Words

Privacy conscious users want full control over the encryption process, and today's Boxcryptor update adds that option to the software. It is certainly a step in the right direction and actually a pretty good offer for a free for personal use service.


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  1. Dante said on September 25, 2013 at 1:15 am

    It’s totally ethical. The perverts store multiple copies of my files in fragments, safe from perverts at the NSA. And I pay them with pretty pictures. Even exchange of services.

  2. Dante said on September 24, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    I use Truecrypt for encryption. Than I parce it out into tiny little pieces scattered and duplicated throughout a zombie network ;)

    1. jay said on September 28, 2013 at 2:23 pm

      MI5 etc can crack truecrypt.

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on September 24, 2013 at 11:10 pm

      That’s only for backup purposes I assume?

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