Posts Tagged ‘edward snowden’

Long Ago George Orwell Explained Why Your Online Meetings Are Not Secure

October 7th, 2013

It is a delicate balance to raise a voice of warning without sounding like an alarmist. But as George Orwell, the author of “1984” put it, “In a time of deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.” Perhaps quoting from Orwell is the best place to begin an article like this, for it was he who wrote these infamous words: “Big Brother is watching you.” This sentence was no doubt true, to some extent, in 1949, when Orwell first published his dystopian novel, but some 64 years later, Orwell’s sentiments have never rung truer.

This blog post isn’t
intended to be
inflammatory or to
sound like a bunch of
paranoid conspiracy
theory, but consider
another article from
August 2013, where
TechWeek Europe
reported that two
encrypted e-mail
services — Silent
Circle and Lavabit —
have “closed over
fears of requests from
the U.S. government
for their users’ data.”

TechWeek Europe’s writer Tom Brewster said the United States has pulled a number of communications providers into its PRISM surveillance program, in an attempt to have access to U.S. citizens’ personal data. (Interested readers can find out more about these matters by running some Google searches on “Edward Snowden,” “NSA whistleblower” and “PRISM surveillance program.”)

But setting aside the news headlines and any political affiliations you may have, take a moment to think about what this information means for everyday Web conferencing and remote support users like yourself. In short, the U.S. government (and we would argue — any talented hacker) could clearly gain access to any hosted provider’s database, giving them complete access to Web meeting details and all the Who, What, When, Where and How of your organization. And if this is true for stateside users, can you imagine what this means for international users?

By the way, if you find yourself feeling naively skeptical at this point in this article, take a gander at the surprisingly relevant advertisements that have been appearing on the sidebars of the Web pages you’re browsing. Ask yourself: How do “they” know so much about your interests? Lucky guesses? No. They know…

For all the reasons stated above, this is why RHUB recommends our secure appliance for all your Web conferencing or remote support needs. Unlike hosted services which leave your meetings exposed to the World Wide Web, RHUB’s appliances work from behind your firewall (not outside of it), giving you a much higher level of security. You can read a brief overview of these various setups here.

So, if you don’t want to risk having “Big Brother” or anybody else privy to your online collaborations, then we highly recommend that you visit our Web site and learn more about the peace of mind available from using RHUB.

To conclude with one final quote from George Orwell’s “1984”: “We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness.” And though he probably had something different in mind, one could certainly argue that Orwell’s meeting place with no darkness is RHUB. At least, we’d like to think so.

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