Cryptography is the art of "secret writing", or how to keep information confidential. Once it was almost exclusively used by Governments and the military, nowadays it is an essential part of the Information Society.
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Protection of Stored Data
Once upon a time, protecting data when it was stored was easy - lock the filing cabinet, or office. Even when mainframes and servers were introduced, physical protection of the machines protected the data from most threats. Laptops and PDAs have ended this simple world - nowadays your confidential data can literally walk right out the door with your employees.
There are many good reasons why your employees should be able to access the organisation's important data in any location, but none of them are a reason to leave the data unprotected. File and folder encryption protects the confidentiality of data, whatever happens to the media or device it is stored on.
Protection of Data in Transit
The Internet has brought us remote access to our computers and data from anywhere, unfortunately, this is not necessarily limited to authorised users. Confidential information may be stolen as it is transferred, or passwords may be sniffed for use in later break-in attempts.
The SSH protocol provides a means of encrypting TCP connections, for secure remote administration, file transfers, X-Windows sessions, or any other TCP-based application. SSH Communications Tectia provides SSH clients and servers on Unix and Windows platforms.
The SSH Communications products support a number of authentication methods, including X509.3 certificates. For applications requiring two-factor authenication, F-Secure can be used with PKCS#11 smartcards, including Aladdin's eToken.