Protect Valuable Data With movianCrypt

Certicom has launched movianCrypt, a data encryptor for Palm handhelds. It automatically safeguards personal or corporate data with transparent, industrial strength encryption, protecting Palm users if their device is lost or stolen.

movianCrypt is an end-user application that works in the background using the latest, strongest encryption standard (128-bit AES) in order to secure the data of all record-based applications. It costs $40 for individuals and site licences are available.

movianCrypt decrypts individual records only as they are accessed, meaning users don't have to wait for all the data on the device to decrypt in order to retrieve a phone number or e-mail. It takes advantage of idle CPU time to re-encrypt data on the fly, so the device it will shut down and lock quickly when turned off.

The app uses AES with 128-bit key encryption to encrypt individual records in all user databases on the device. This includes the Address Book, Memo Pad, and third-party application databases, as well as the application preferences and clipboard contents. In addition, movianCrypt provides an option to disable encryption on a per-application basis.

movianCrypt is designed for the best possible performance on the 68K processor. Using idle CPU time to re-encrypt data, the impact to the device is minimal.

The password is not stored on the device. Therefore it cannot be HotSynced to the desktop with the data, safeguarding it from attack. Also, HotSync and beaming are protected by password authentication. Automatic lockout on power-off or after a determined period of time, ensures further security.

movianCrypt is compatible with all Palm devices running Palm OS 3.0 and above (including OS 4.0), as well as the Handspring Visor Series running Palm OS 3.1 and above.

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I.M. Anonymous @ 6/13/2001 12:08:48 PM #

Eval Version??

I.M. Anonymous @ 6/13/2001 1:57:08 PM #
According to their website, you must first regitser and purchase moviancrypt. This looks interesting, especially if it can keep data secure on a backup MMC/SD card, but I would not buy it without the ability to test it first....

RE: Eval Version??
I.M. Anonymous @ 6/13/2001 2:49:49 PM #
It also says in the fine print that "support and updates are available for an additional fee".. so we get to buy it sight unseen, and then pay for support and upgrades... Thanks, but I think I'll wait for the next version with free support and at least an upgrade or two.

RE: Eval Version??
I.M. Anonymous @ 6/13/2001 6:40:36 PM #
I highly doubt this software was intented for the average consumer. For business users, $40 + support fees is nothing compared to the loss of data.

RE: Eval Version??
fkclo @ 6/13/2001 9:05:22 PM #
It seems that $40 is becoming the benchmark price for this sort of commercial data protection software for Palm.

JAWZDataGator sells for $49.95
PDASecure sells also for $49.95
and now another $49.95 product !!

The lack of evaluation version is what differentiates movianCrypt from the other two, which provides trial version.

BTW the name of the software is awkward.

Francis Lo
Hong Kong

RE: Eval Version??
I.M. Anonymous @ 6/14/2001 12:13:30 AM #
This product has all the signs of corporate arrogance (no eval version, ridiculous price, pay for support)
we've come to expect in the PC arena, but not in the Palm realm. Who do they think they are, Microsoft?
I'll give it a pass and advise the users I support to do the same.

RE: Eval Version??
I.M. Anonymous @ 6/14/2001 12:16:28 AM #
Amen, brother.

RE: Eval Version??
I.M. Anonymous @ 6/14/2001 9:59:01 AM #
Go ask a security expert and he/she will tell you that any secret protected directly or indirectly by a password (unless it is looong) is not secure if automated attack can be launched. I am afraid under current Palm hardware platforms, all the encryption softwares are under this category. Remember, false sense of security is worse than no security.

MMC/SD Card Protection

epetrack @ 6/13/2001 8:12:38 PM #
I spoke with someone at the company today. This does *not* protect the card in any way. They did seem interested in feedback, and said they were interested in looking into how to support security for cards.... Without that, I'm not so interested, so I did not pursue the evaluation issue....

Can't be worse than JawzDataGator

I.M. Anonymous @ 6/14/2001 12:23:43 AM #
Nothing could be worse than JawzDataGator - talk about an awkward tradename.

This stuff just doesn't work well. We can thank Palm for the poorly designed OS and poor conceptual planning. We must forgive them for they just blundered into success.

Any alternatives?

I.M. Anonymous @ 6/14/2001 1:02:19 PM #
I was interested in this movian product when it was first
announced, so I decided to read through the whitepaper and
data sheets that are available on their website. Unfortunately,
the product fails to deliver, at least in my opinion.

With so many widespread viruses and attacks against
Microsoft-based OSes, I want something that not only encrypts
my PDA, but the backup that resides on my PC as well. This
product offers a start -- strong encryption on the PDA is
something we've needed for a while. But what's the point of
encrypting my data on the PDA alone? That's certainly not the
only place that the "bad guys" are likely to go looking for stuff.

Does anyone know of any products (freeware, shareware, etc.)
that offers strong encryption of data on *both* the PC and
the PDA?

I'm curious to hear what others are using to encrypt their data,
or at least protect it when they go mobile with the PDA...

RE: Any alternatives?
tychay @ 6/14/2001 2:49:54 PM #

The latest version of TealLock will transparently encrypt databases for you. It does not do record by record encryption, except for the ability to have it only encrypt private records. I tried it out but since TealPoint software is not up to date re: Palm m50x series, I decided on discretion being the better part of valor in my current Palm.

There are a number of software that will encrypt individual pieces of information (passwords and the like) in a pretty secure fashion (3DES or better). Some of my favorites include:

  • CryptInfo which I used as a student. CryptInfo was free at the time since I was a student. It is fully featured, no-nag shareware. It has the simplest interface of anything I've seen.
  • GNU Keyring (available from sourceforge). Is open-source freeware. It's what I beam to people who keep all their info on the memo pad (like my boss).
  • Web Confidential (shareware). I use this currently. You have to buy a bundle or the desktop and palm apps separately. The fully featured conduit and integration of the desktop version into the OS is great. The only inconvenience is that you have to unlock the file on the Palm to synchronize and you have to use the same passphrase on both (my passphrase is like 30 characters which means I've gotten pretty good with my graffiti/fitaly keyboard).

Hope this helps,

terry chay Righteous Travel Deals in Record Time

san jose, ca, usa

Find Problem?

I.M. Anonymous @ 6/14/2001 11:18:55 PM #
If all the data is encrypted by record just imagine the little Dragonball processor churning away to decrypt and then encryt each record when a simple "find" is performed!

I suspect this program would be more of an annoyance than it's worth with my 1700+ addresses.

Here's another idea: don't lose your Palm.



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