New tools finally give users a way to enforce their own privacy

'Military grade' encryption imperfect, but gives users some protection even from their own vendors

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The first version of Wickr runs only on iOS machines, but later versions will be available for Android and for Windows and Mac PCs, according to co-founder Nico Sell, a former organizer of the DefCon security conference.

Wickr isn't the only mobile app with "military grade security" to hit the mobile market this month, though.

Privacy becomes a trend, as personal-security toolbox starts to fill up

Keeper Security launched a new version of its password vault Keeper, with connections to cloud services including DropBox and Evernote.

It added BCrypt to encrypt passwords stored on a phone (there's the "military grade encryption") and when it's stored on the cloud.

Keeper uses 128-bit AES to encrypt data in place and SSL to keep it safe during transmission, and doesn't store the master password; users have to keep track of that themselves.

Earlier this month, CipherCloud offered "military grade encryption" for Gmail, though it is not focusing specifically on the mobile market.

Its software runs on a virtual gateway between a corporate Gmail subscriber and Gmail, using 256-bit AES to encrypt data as its transmitted – without changing the way Gmail works or its speed, according to the company.

That CipherCloud works on both Android and iOS by default (through the gateway) is "icing on the cake," according to a statement to Forbes by CipherCloud's VP of marketing.

Rather than pitching it as a way to maintain privacy and security, however, CipherCloud describes it as a way to allow companies "with strict data privacy and compliance requirements to adopt Google Apps for Business."

That's a much broader focus than apps that simply encrypt, conceal or secure communications on a particular device.

Photo Credit: 

Reuters

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