Cloud

Italian data security firm Boole Server expands into North America

Boole Server, an Italian ECM services provider that offers a secure sharing solution for documents, is opening offices in Boston and San Francisco in 2014. Read what it does and doesn't do (yet).

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Boole Server is an enterprise content management (ECM) services provider based in Milan, Italy. The company is expanding its operations into the US, with offices in San Francisco and Boston opening in 2014.

What Boole Server does

Boole Server allows for sharing and syncing of files and folders for collaborating with multiple people inside of a workgroup. Boole Server's approach focuses on security — everything is encrypted with 2048-bit RC6 encryption (with keys stored on the server), including files currently being edited. All files are encrypted, and extensions are available for mail clients such as Outlook and Thunderbird. In addition, Boole Server Agent, a helper program for viewing files outside of the web client, is available for 32- and 64-bit versions of Windows, as well as Android and iOS.

A particular focus of this approach is that the Boole Server platform liberates the data from the IT workers employed to maintain the infrastructure on which the data is stored — having one disgruntled IT employee with access to everything, potentially ruining a company by releasing the information to the internet at large, or selling it off in an act of corporate espionage is not a possibility with Boole Server. The importance of this is paramount in light of recent cases, such as a former Ford employee stealing trade secrets, or a disgruntled ex-employee remotely disabling the cars of people with auto loans. Permission settings can be set with a high level of granularity, and are managed by the creator of the data, not the IT systems administrator. The system also restricts copy and paste, and screen printing/video streaming of protected documents.

What Boole Server doesn't do yet

At present, Boole Server runs only on Microsoft Windows Server 2003, 2008, and 2008 R2, with IIS 6 or 7, and SQL Server or SQL Server Express; this is all last generation (though supported) technology. Windows Server 2003 will reach the end of extended support in July 2015, while the next generation of Windows on the desktop, and soon the server, is being previewed already.

Although there are some security issues with IIS regarding the support of Perfect Forward Secrecy, representatives from Boole Server provided assurances that RC6 is not vulnerable in this flaw, and that Windows is used only for the GUI — the actual heavy lifting is done inside the Boole Server software stack.

Although at present there is no server level support for Linux or Mac OS X, Valerio Pastore, the CTO of Boole Server, indicated in a phone interview that a Linux version of Boole Server is planned for 2015.

In the long-term roadmap, Boole Server intends to extend the platform to cover public cloud storage in addition to the on-premises solutions currently available.

Who uses Boole Server

Many large Italian companies use the Boole Server platform, including pasta maker Barilla, confectioner Ferrero, and fashion brands Gucci, Versace, and Giorgio Armani, as well as the Italian Ministry of the Interior, the European Space Agency, and a number of banks worldwide.

A humorous note

When asked why an Italian data security firm would be named after British mathematician George Boole, the founders noted that, though they do have a fondness for Leonardo da Vinci, Boole was a more appropriate decision, as he is the creator of binary.

What's your take?

With Boole Server expanding to the US, are you likely to turn to Boole Server for your ECM needs? Let us know in the comments.

About James Sanders

James Sanders is a Java programmer specializing in software as a service and thin client design, and virtualizing legacy programs for modern hardware.

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