Dekart Secrets Keeper is a quick, simple, secure and cost-effective method for implementing encryption software in a Windows environment. Its bare-bones interface is clean and functional, without unnecessary waste.
This software is as simple as it gets. Dekart Secrets Keeper works quickly to encrypt office files, such as PDF’s, Word documents and Excel spreadsheets. Unfortunately, it is very slow at encrypting large files and shouldn’t be considered a workhorse-type program. However, for day to day use regarding documents, its functions should suffice.
Encryption takes place with the 256-bit AES algorithm, which is never mentioned in this encryption software and is only briefly noted as “AES” in the text help file. A password strength meter is implemented, but only for specific operations. Data is reliably encrypted/decrypted and the originals are destroyed. There is also an option for manually shredding files, separate from the encryption function. Attempts at restoring the source files with a recovery program proved futile. Dekart Secrets Keeper securely shredded the original files.
The encryption software permitted full use, as it was not crippled in any way other than a 30 day trial. It allowed the user to compress files before encryption, which is useful in saving space, if desired. Using the USB flash drive as a key conveniently allows rapid encryption of files without repeated password entry, saving keystrokes and confusion. Dekart uses different types of security hardware keys to generate cryptographic keys and to securely store private data. Supported devices for authentication include smart cards, USB tokens, USB disks, sim/smart card readers, and biometric interfaces. The only feature of this software not tested was the Smart card/ USB disk and biometric authentication. Using a USB flash drive as a key did work, with no apparent flaws.
As for the self-extracting archive feature, this appeared to work, allowing the user to select files to add to the .exe file. The compressed and compiled file appeared on the desktop, but repeated clicking on it did nothing.
The majority of encryption programs tested display context menu options, i.e., the ability to right-click on a file or folder with options appearing in a popup menu. The only option when right clicking with this software is “open with,” and “Dekart.” It would be easier to just double click on the desktop shortcut. The absence of this “standard” is a major shortcoming.
The software help documentation is in the form of a text file and only briefly explains the functions of the program. The online help includes a feedback form, how to’s, FAQs, forum, demo repository, email address, mailing address (in Moldova) and phone numbers. No online chat is available. The forum provides support on all of Dekart’s products. Unfortunately, most advice provided by their experts is in the form of a question and rarely are there follow-ups to users’ problems.
Dekart Secrets Keeper is a basic and capable "no frills" program, but sadly there are unresolved issues that need to be corrected. The password meter utility provides immediate feedback to the user whether their password is strong or not. Unfortunately, it only works when creating a key for the USB and when manually creating a password using the SFX button. It does not work when creating a password for manually encrypting files.
Anyone interested in this data encryption software should download the trial from dekart.com, and see if it fills their needs. The trial software allows 30 days of full use, and is more than enough time for sufficient testing. The best suggestion would be to wait until version 4 is released and to test that version fully before buying.
Dekart Secrets Keeper provides powerful security in a small package that includes state of the art biometric support.
Dekart Secrets Keeper doesn't follow through with its stated features, which can be frustrating for new users.
The software's main functions are very usable, but its promise of portability is broken. Still worth taking a look at.