Increasingly hi-tech portable devices allow us to carry our important documents wherever we go, but as cyber attacks become more malevolent, virtual protection is vital. Deutsche Post, whose DocWallet is our winner of the Best Cloud Service award 2013, has the answer
Tradition and innovation are the opposing poles of economic thinking. Modern business necessitates a balancing act between these positions. Deutsche Post AG has already known and successfully implemented this for some time. In addition to the successful mail and parcel business, Europe’s largest postal service provider has long offered a widely varied portfolio. This ranges from standardised products to tailor-made solutions in the areas of mail communication, dialog marketing and parcel transportation.
Deutsche Post continues to combine physical and electronic communication in order to consolidate its position as a comprehensive service provider for secure, simple and reliable communication. Confidential document management has always been one of the core competencies of this globally active company. This is no different in the digital age, but now the parameters have changed.
Deutsche Post is not the only company aware that mobile products and mobile solutions are part of the future – the market is demanding them. Devices such as iPads and storage media are gaining importance in both the private and business spheres. As yet, the issue of security has remained unresolved in this context. The core problem: how can documents used on mobile devices be protected from falling into the wrong hands if the device is lost?
The innovative minds at Deutsche Post have formulated a solution: DocWallet. Simply put, this is a modern, easy-to-use and yet highly secure document manager –a future-oriented solution for anyone who values a high degree of data security when using mobile devices.
Deutsche Post has clearly defined the product’s target groups. The app is particularly suited to those who handle confidential information as part of their profession – for example, lawyers, judges, doctors, politicians or management consultants. For legal reasons, all of these groups have a strong interest in protecting their digital data. However, important documents must also be protected in the private sphere. Insurance documents, certificates, diplomas, wills, tax documents – DocWallet keeps these documents safely under lock and key.
According to Harald Lemke, who is responsible for the technical implementation of DocWallet: “Our success is down to the increasing need for security of the users. More and more people want to use documents from their work and private lives digitally and securely. The concept of DocWallet takes account of the worrying development that central servers are increasingly the target for attacks. DocWallet gives users peace of mind knowing that they can count on the security of sensitive data.”
The app has evidently struck a chord with users worldwide. Marco Hauprich, SVP of Mobile and New Media at Deutsche Post, said: “We have had downloads from as far afield as Oceania. In the first five weeks following the market launch in December 2012, 30,000 app downloads were registered, and there has been growing demand in the USA in particular. To date, almost 70,000 downloads have been registered. We are particularly proud that our digital safe has gained respect and recognition throughout the industry worldwide mere months after its market launch. DocWallet has already been awarded Best Cloud Service, 2013 by London-based Mobile Technology Report.
“From a technical perspective, the personal document folder ensures the confidentiality of documents through end-to-end encryption using its own dedicated server in Germany. The data is already exclusively encrypted when it is transferred to a PC during synchronisation. Files and folders can only be viewed on authorised devices. The DocWallet server does not contain keys or user passwords; the confidential documents are therefore even protected in the event of an intrusion.
“There has not yet been a case in which it has been possible to steal documents protected by DocWallet. This applies worldwide. Naturally, we have also adhered to our guiding key security principles with the newly unveiled second version of DocWallet.”
Listening to users
Feedback from intensive contact with users has been incorporated into the DocWallet upgrade. Many features are based directly on their suggestions. The iPad app now offers an extended range of functions, which are available from the basic version upwards. The new DocWallet is now also available as an app for Macs as well as PCs.
Our digital safe has gained respect and recognition throughout the industry, mere months after its market launch
In addition, the application can be used as a stand-alone document reader at no extra charge supporting, among others, Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint and PDF documents. Further, the new version includes functions for importing images, wireless printing via AirPrint and playing presentations via AirPlay. With the update, documents can also be photographed and stored in encrypted form in DocWallet.
Hauprich continued: “No system – however good – is perfect straight after its market launch. Hence it was clear to us from the outset that our work is far from over. Fortunately, the users have supported us with suggestions and positive feedback. The main criticism of the first version was the incompatibility with Macs. Naturally, this has now been provided.”
The makers of DocWallet have also reacted to criticism from users over the price. DocWallet cost €49.99 per year when it was launched; the product manager said: “That is the equivalent of ten packs of cigarettes for an unprecedented level of security. To me, that really doesn’t seem too high. However, we came across an astonishing side effect of the digital age: people want more protection, more security, but they are not prepared to pay for it. No one would think that classic safes for keeping their jewellery in should be available for free.”
Nevertheless, Deutsche Post has taken the criticism seriously. As a result, the new DocWallet is offered with various packages. In the basic edition, the app can now even be used free of charge as a stand-alone reader. Users also have confidential documents to hand that are always encrypted and which they can edit.
With DocWallet Sync, data can be synchronised with up to three devices for only €9.99 per year. For anyone using more than three computers, synchronisation is available with any number of devices for just €19.99.
Alongside the launch of the upgrade, Deutsche Post is still looking further ahead with the announcement of further editions of DocWallet. This already has a working title – DocWallet Team – and will particularly appeal to users who wish to synchronise an unlimited number of devices and share folders within a team. Also being developed at the moment, as a top-level product, is DocWallet Enterprise – an individual solution for larger companies and corporations. Among other features, it will enable central account management and administration of system structures.
And the wave of innovations will not end there. Marco Hauprich risks a glimpse into the future: “We are sure to come up with additional features which make the offer even more attractive. I don’t only mean security aspects – for us, user-friendliness is also a significant criterion. Only then does a product have a chance of long-term success. With DocWallet we have set a clear benchmark in this respect and will do everything possible to maintain our leading position.”
Deutsche Post’s DocWallet has won the award for Best Cloud Service, 2013, in the Mobile Technology Report Awards.