TrueCrypt’s Unexpect Closure Leaves Users Confused

obrBy Denise Sullivan — Last Updated: 03 Jun'14 2014-06-03T01:00:00+00:00Google+

TrueCrypt’s unexpected closure has left users scratching their heads. The open source encryption software group shut its doors with no warning, only a vague statement on the company’s website. No solid reason was given for the sudden shutdown, however, many are speculating as to the reason why.

TrueCrypt’s Unexpected Closure May Be Related to Microsoft

Rumors that TrueCrypt’s closing may be Microsoft related comes from the rather cryptic message left on TC’s website.

WARNING: Using TrueCrypt is not secure as it may contain unfixed security issues. The development of TruCrypt was ended in 5/2014 after Microsoft terminated support of Windows XP. Windows 8/7/Vista and later offer integrated support for encrypted disks and virtual disk images. Such integrated support is also available on other platforms.

While the explanation that Microsoft is behind the closure is sound reasoning, it is not the only theory floating around. Another rumor as to what caused the shutdown is rooted in an ongoing audit of the company’s code.

In October 2013, Matthew Green, noted cryptography researcher and John Hopkins University Professor, started raising questions about TrueCrypt. On the heels of the NSA scandal, he claimed an audit of the software was necessary if users were to know whether or not they could trust the code. He was successful in his crowd funding campaign to execute a professional analysis of the encryption.

One of the biggest concerns was that TrueCrypt’s authors remained anonymous during their decade long operation. Green stated:

“The biggest one [concern] is that nobody knows who wrote it. This skeeves me out. As Dan Kaminsky puts it, ‘Authorship is a better predictor of quality that openness.’ I would feel better if I knew who the TrueCrypt authors were.”

Despite the shutdown, Green intends to complete the audit as promised. However, in light of the company closing its proverbial doors with no warning, users may feel they cannot trust the software, no matter what the study results are. It is almost as if the programmers have something to hide from the probe.

We’ve been big fans of TrueCrypt, so this comes as quite a shock to us here at Cloudwards. Tell us, what do you think?

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