SecureSafe is cloud storage service nestled in the Swiss Alps, within a former military bunker. Its parent company, DSwiss, promises the service was designed from the ground up with security and privacy in mind. In addition, they include a secure password manager, data inheritance, and an e-mail inbox that extracts attachments.
It all sounds great on the surface, but is DSwiss’ solution good enough for your personal use? Find out below.
- End to end 256-bit encryption and no-knowledge privacy
- Data is stored in Switzerland
- Encrypted password manager
- Designate data beneficiaries in the case of an emergency
- Extract images, attachments, or text PDFs from e-mails
- Securely preview attachments with no local trace saved
- Shared links do not require account to access
- Send link passwords by SMS and link expiration
- Extensive Team Space management rights
- Well-featured desktop and iOS software
- NAS support
- No multimedia features or document editing
- No file version saving or restore
- Limited sharing links on some accounts with manual management necessary
- No link sharing on desktop or Android
- Team Space member management only possible on web client
- Most of the best features are limited or unavailable on free or Pro accounts
- No data inheritance on Team Space plans
- 100 MB of free storage without referrals / 100 GB max
- Slow upload/download speeds outside of Switzerland
- E-mail support only for paid users
If you’re looking for a cloud storage solution that’s specifically for your sensitive data, or team projects with sensitive data, SecureSafe is a fantastic option to consider. While its storage options and lower tiered plans are quite limited, it’s priced well enough to be a secondary solution. When you add in data inheritance and their unique feature set, it’s well worth checking out.
It’s unusual to see a flash-based interface these days, but it works quite well. It’s easy to use, easy to move files around with drag-and-drop movement, and offers a lot of upfront information.
Most of your standard features are supported in the web client, but there are a few annoying drawbacks. For instance, the service does not support saving file versions. Also, while there’s a trash can that files can stay in forever, those files will also take up space. You might find yourself manually cleaning out the trash just to save space.
However, SecureSafe’s Mail-In feature is pretty ingenious. Any e-mail that comes to your @mail-in.securesafe.com e-mail address will be scanned for images or attachments. If any are found, they can be downloaded to your File Safe. If none are found, Mail-In will generate a PDF of the full text of the e-mail.
If you pay for a Silver or Gold account, you get a previewer for the files that keeps the files off your device. It’s a cool feature, but also the only way to preview files before downloading them, so it’d be nice to see some piece of this added into the free tier as well.
SecureSafe supports sharing links to individual files or multiple files, but not folders, through e-mail invites. Thankfully, the links do not need an account to access.
Free accounts have relatively few customization options other than an expiration date. Silver and Gold get a few more options, but I especially like the ability to send a separate link access code through a text message.
Free and Pro accounts are further restricted to 3 or 5 currently active links at once. This restriction gets really annoying at times, because links are not removed automatically as they expire or are used. Free and Pro accounts are forced to manually curate their shared links.
To get file collaboration, you have to opt for a Team Space plan. These plans create a single storage chunk that’s shared across all members of the team, along with tiny personal chunks for each user.
Team Space members are sent e-mail invites, and can be sent an additional access code by text message, like with sharing links. I loved how many access roles are available to the administrator. While it’d be nice to have more granular control, I felt like the roles available were granular enough for my needs.
SecureSafe’s data inheritance policy is like a will for your digital data.
You can set up between 1 and 20 beneficiaries for your data, depending on the pricing tier you choose. A single Authorized Activator is designated as the executor of this “will,” and only this person can start the data inheritance process by using an activation key you provide them.
Once the key is used, SecureSafe sends activation keys to your beneficiaries by either e-mail or registered letters. You will also receive notifications, so you can stop the process in the case of fraud.
You can set beneficiaries with as much granularity as you want, even so much as setting one beneficiary to a single file or password.
Data inheritance is not offered on Team Space plans, presumably due to the amount of people involved.
Password Safe is a simple password manager with a bit of a security twist. Like the rest of your data, passwords are secured end-to-end. When you copy the password into your clipboard, the data is encrypted in your device memory, and authenticated with an RSA key.
It’s not the most sophisticated way to deal with credentials, since you’re essentially filling out a spreadsheet with encryption and search capabilities. But it is a secure way to deal with unmemorable strong passwords, especially if you tend to store them insecurely in a Word doc or a Post-It Note.
SecureSafe’s desktop software is available for both Windows and Mac OS X. These programs cover the basic feature set of the web, letting you access File Safes, Team Spaces, Password Safes, and file extracted with Mail-In.
But I really liked that you could set any cloud storage Safe to sync to literally any folder available to your PC, even network shares like NAS devices. You can also create new File Safes, Mail-In boxes, or Team Spaces out of any local or network folder you wish.
The software has a decent array of configuration options. The frequency of sync updates can be set from every 5 minutes to every 8 hours. Password Safe can auto-lock in varying frequencies or never. Even the encrypted RAM-based clipboard can auto-erase at a given frequency. However, there are no bandwidth limits or any way to set a manual proxy, unfortunately.
The software also has some curious functionality holes. For instance, there’s no way to share files from the desktop software, nor any way to manage the access rights of your Team Space members.
SecureSafe offers some very different mobile apps for both iOS and Android.
Both apps offer the standard suite of options, like uploading, downloading, and accessing files from your File Safes, Mail-Ins, or Team Spaces. Like the desktop software, auto-timeout can be configured but Team Space member access cannot be changed.
I was surprised to find an “Offline Mode” for the apps, since there’s no way to designate files for offline use. However, only passwords can be accessed with the offline mode, not File Safe items. Still, it’s a nice touch that no-knowledge services don’t offer.
Other than relative interface polish, the iOS and Android apps are pretty similar. Unlike the desktop software, both apps offer file sharing support. The iOS app’s sharing is impressive and just as featured as the web client.
On the other hand, sharing on the Android app is nearly pointless. Files can only be shared as e-mail attachments, which defies a few of the main reasons cloud storage was created in the first place. It should be noted that the Android app is not advertised anywhere in their marketing, so maybe it’s for the best.
SecureSafe data is protected with end-to-end 256-bit AES encryption both on the server and in transit. Login sessions are validated with 2048-bit RSA tokens, and protected by an EV SSL certificate. Two-factor authentication is also available through the company’s iPhone and Android apps, if you subscribe to a paid plan.
Stored data is naturally protected by Switzerland’s strong data privacy laws, but SecureSafe also employs zero-knowledge privacy courtesy of the RFC 2945 Secure Remote Password (SRP) protocol. This method uses random numbers generated by the client and server to generate shared RSA keys. The result is a robust encryption method that authenticates without the server ever seeing or needing your password credentials. Thus, not even SecureSafe employees can access your data.
Data on iPhones or Android devices are also encrypted with 256-bit AES keys which are stored locally on the device, so that files can still be accessed in Offline mode.
As a side note, their use of Flash Player is a little worrying, due to its shaky security past. The protections they employ should prevent any Flash-based issues, but I’d still like to see them move past Flash in the future.
SecureSafe’s servers are 100% based out of Switzerland, which means you’ll run into some performance penalties the farther you are geographically. We tested this with an ISP rated at 50 Mbps down and 5 Mbps up.
|Average Download Speed||8.06 Mbps|
|Maximum Download Speed||30.04 Mbps|
|Average Upload Speed||2.66 Mbps|
|Maximum Upload Speed||4.82 Mbps|
While speeds weren’t generally where I’d like to see them, they also weren’t as terrible as I’d expected. Considering the state of home internet in America, these speeds might hit the performance maximum of most users anyway. However, those with great ISP performance that are looking for top-speed syncing will be disappointed.
SecureSafe’s pricing is pretty reasonable, but I’m disappointed by the lack of large-scale storage options. Plans range from the absurdly low 100 MB of free storage to the also absurdly low 100 GB of paid storage.
You can add 500 MB of extra storage for referrals, up to 10 GB.
|Monthly Price||$0.00||$1.70||$4.40||$13.20||$4.50 / user|
|Personal Storage||100 MB||1 GB||10 GB||100 GB||100 MB|
|Shared Storage||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||10 GB|
|Set Sharing Passwords||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Files shared per link||3 files||5 files||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Secure PDF/Image Viewer||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|E-mail and Web Support||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
The restrictions on free and even the first tier of paid users is a bit annoying. But still, $53 a year isn’t that bad of a deal to get all of the major features with Silver. 10 GB of storage won’t be a primary cloud platform though.
SecureSafe’s Team Space plans seem like a shared Silver plan combined with multiple free plans for personal storage. It’s annoying how little personal storage each user gets. Thankfully, additional shared storage can be purchased in 100 GB chunks for $13.20 / month.
They also offer a $9.90 / user / month bundle with 3 Team-Spaces and 3 users included.
SecureShare only offers the FAQ for free users. Paid users also get e-mail support as well as support through a web-based chat client. However, there is no phone support.
|Average Upload Speed||2.66 Mbps (5 Mbps connection)|
|Average Download Speed||8.06 Mbps (50 Mbps connection)|
|Free Online Storage||100 MB|
|Mobile Apps||Android, iOS|
|Keep Deleted Files||Forever|
|Back Up to Local Drive|
Sync and Share Features
|Public File Sharing|
|Data Center Location(s)||Switzerland|
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