SpiderOak is an ultrasecure alternative to SkyDrive and other cloud storage services, like Dropbox. SpiderOak’s chief attraction is its “zero-knowledge” security system. Every bit of it is encrypted and the keys are controlled by the users. Lose your SpiderOak password, and you’re out of luck; the company can’t recover it or reveal your secrets to anybody, even a government agent toting a subpoena.
A secure mailing service called Hushmail encrypts messages sent to fellow users. And friends with Gmail, Hotmail, or other services can benefit too. You can attach a test question, like “what’s your favorite movie?” to your e-mail, which they’ll receive as a webpage link. If they answer the question, the message is decrypted in a browser window. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.
Hiawatha Bray can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.