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Watchdox Secures Sensitive Documents On Android

Confidela, a service provider that secures sensitive documents, is expanding to the mobile space by offering its service on the Google Android platform. Android 2.2 Froyo. The latest version is the first mobile operating system for which WatchDox, previously available only online, can now be used. The application allows only qualified people to view documents and restricts who can copy, print or forward them. WatchDox starts at $50 a month for an individual subscriber. For larger
enterprises the service sells for as much as $1,000 a month per user
with additional features.

Android is the open source mobile operating system developed by Google that runs on a variety of smartphones from companies such as HTC, Motorola and Samsung. Technology such as Microsoft SharePoint or Documentum can also secure documents for collaboration purposes, but once the documents are removed from such a  repository, the security is no longer in place, said Adi Ruppin, vice president of marketing and business development for Confidela. With Frovo, a document sender can set the restrictions on how the document can and cannot be used and e-mail the recipient. The recipient receives a verification e-mail with a link to the document. They don't even need a password. The sender can also determine when access to that document expires for that recipient.

CVG Strategy LLC, a defense contracting consulting firm, uses the online version of WatchDox, said Kevin Gholston, vice president of business development. CVG helps clients hire testing firms to make sure their product meets military specifications. For them, document security is critical. "Because these test plans are confidential for our clients, we don't want to give [testing firms] an electronic copy," Gholston said. "We're using [WatchDox] as an enhanced confidentiality protection."

Adobe Acrobat documents can be secured but that security is easily thwarted, Gholston said, while other document security solutions he's looked at are hard to configure, hard to use and are expensive. "It's so easy," he said of the WatchDox service. While CVG doesn't use WatchDox on Android, he can understand why such a service might be attractive.

Confidela is supporting Android 2.2 because it supports Adobe Flash, which is the predominant software for viewing documents, said Ruppin. Versions of WatchDox will be available later this year for BlackBerry and Symbian mobile operating systems. Since Apple, notably, doesn't support Flash, Confidela is developing an application that will run natively on the iPhone or iPad to access the WatchDox service.