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Dropbox adds end-to-end, zero-knowledge encryption with acquisition of Boxcryptor assets

Boxcryptor technology will be embedded into Dropbox to improve security for business and enterprise users

Cloud storage giant Dropbox has signed an agreement to acquire several key assets from Boxcryptor, bringing end-to-end encryption to business users.

Germany-based Boxcryptor specialises in providing end-to-end, zero-knowledge encryption for cloud storage services. Its integrated technology is designed to protect business data in the cloud from unauthorised access. 

Dropbox is now bringing these capabilities to its own enterprise users and, by combining them with its own cloud storage product, the company says it will be able to better meet its customers’ evolving needs.

“We know security is a top priority for our customers,” Dropbox said in an announcement. “It’s important that we offer features that are seamlessly built into our product so customers who want or need an end-to-end solution can safeguard their confidential information without compromising their user experience.”

Specifically, Dropbox said the move is in response to heightened customer demand for built-in end-to-end encryption functionality and features, as the number of cyber attacks continues to rise. It pointed to Ernst & Young’s 2021 Global Information Survey which concluded that more than three-quarters of respondents saw an uptick in the number of disruptive attacks following the COVID-19 pandemic

To help tackle this, Boxcryptor’s capabilities will be embedded natively within Dropbox for subscribed business users, providing an additional layer of security that encrypts files locally on their devices prior to syncing their content to Dropbox. 

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“We look forward to being able to offer end-to-end zero-knowledge encryption so that our customers can focus on working and collaborating on Dropbox knowing their content is even more safe and secure,” Dropbox added.

As for Boxcryptor itself, the company said the move will enable it to better scale its security capabilities through Dropbox’s global platform and provide an “elevated encryption service for users”.

The company was also keen to emphasise that its existing customers will not be affected by the acquisition and that “no contracts, customer data or keys will migrate to Dropbox”. All data will remain in its German data centres

“While we’ve sold several key technology assets to Dropbox, we will continue to service our existing users and customers pursuant to the terms of their existing contracts,” Boxcryptor said in a company blog post.  “However, as of today, we will not allow the creation of new accounts or purchases of any new licenses.” 

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