If you’ve ever purchased a piece of computer software or hardware, entered card details for a purchase online or read anything about security, you’ll have come across the word ‘encryption’. However, encryption isn’t a new term. In fact, it has been around since the ancient Egyptians, who used it to ensure enemies were not able to intercept their messages.
Essentially, encryption is the ability to transform text, or data into something unrecognisable, in order that it is not read or used by any unauthorised parties. For example, if you were to encrypt the sentence ‘I am going to the shops’, the encrypted message may look like this – ‘r fe hmnew kin de apelf’, which is completely unintelligible to anyone reading it. Whilst the example above is fairly basic, when it comes to digital encryption, complicated algorithms are used to ensure a higher level of encryption using several different calculations.
Why use encryption?
It won’t have escaped your notice that there have been some pretty frightening data breaches recently. From Sony’s 2011 PlayStation Network breach, where hackers managed to get their hands on the records of 77 million users – including some credit card details, to an insider attack at Sage just this year, it’s becoming increasingly important to ensure personal information doesn’t get into the wrong hands. Obviously, ecommerce and digital banking require a high level of encryption, but many people are concerned about other aspects of their personal data, including their messages to friends and their personal calendars being seen by others, so opt for platforms that offer a high level of encryption. WhatsApp, for example, have now begun to offer end-to-end encryption of messages, and there are even crypto apps in development that will work on your device to encrypt all communications through your social networks.
Does MEEM encrypt everything?
Here at MEEM, we take your privacy extremely seriously. Your most important personal information such as contacts, calendars and SMS messages are all encrypted using AES-256 bit encryption. However, in order to ensure that data transfer happens at a reasonable speed, it’s not possible encrypt everything. With this in mind, we have taken the decision to encrypt the most sensitive information, and eschew encryption for photos, videos and music. This is due to the size of photograph, video and music files. If we encrypted these, the data transfer speed would be drastically reduced, which would have a detrimental effect on our user’s experience.
We hope this clears up any confusion over encryption, and now you know that next time you charge and backup your phone with MEEM, your most sensitive personal information is kept secure.