A Configuration User Interface for Multi-Cloud Storage Based on Secret Sharing : An Exploratory Design Study
Sammanfattning: Storing personal information in a secure and reliable manner may be crucial for organizational as well as private users. Encryption protects the confidentiality of data against adversaries but if the cryptographic key is lost, the information will not be obtainable for authorized individuals either. Redundancy may protect information against availability issues or data loss, but also comes with greater storage overhead and cost. Cloud storage serves as an attractive alternative to traditional storage as one is released from maintenance responsibilities and does not have to invest in in-house IT-resources. However, cloud adoption is commonly hindered due to privacy concerns. Instead of relying on the security of a single cloud, this study aims to investigate the applicability of a multi-cloud solution based on Secret Sharing, and to identify suitable options and guidelines in a configuration user interface (UI). Interviews were conducted with technically skilled people representing prospective users, followed by walkthroughs of a UI prototype. Although the solution would (theoretically) allow for employment of less “trustworthy” clouds without compromising the data confidentiality, the research results indicate that trust factors such as compliance with EU laws may still be a crucial prerequisite in order for users to utilize cloud services. Users may worry about cloud storage providers colluding, and the solution may not be perceived as adequately secure without the use of encryption. The configuration of the Secret Sharing parameters are difficult to comprehend even for technically skilled individuals and default values could/should be recommended to the user.
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