Feeling secure with Microsoft Word

Kicking over the traces

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Business security measures using SSL

How often do you send out documents created with Microsoft Word that are based upon previous documents? Do you always use a new, clean template or do you take the last proposal you wrote and modify it for the new prospect? Do you ever turn off the 'Track Changes' option?

If you don't then the recipients will almost certainly be able to see the proposal you sent to the previous customer--and all the other customers that have been included somewhere along the chain. What happens if there is really sensitive information involved? Clearly management is required.

There are several different levels of document management that range from the complexity of content management systems and the workflow that comes from the movement of information around large organisations, through to the use of simple word processing packages and the management features that they have built-in. However, the former is usually too much for those that do not make their living from content whilst the latter does not offer real control in a multi-author environment. This is where technology from Workshare can be used.

Workshare is a company that we came across very recently and, as the creators of quite a few documents that need to be checked and verified by users both inside and outside of our organisation, we could relate to what it has to say.

Workshare has two products, DeltaView and Synergy. The former is a rather impressive document differencing technology that is able to match patterns across Microsoft Word formats and spot additions, deletions, movements and so on. Synergy builds on DeltaView to provide the broader controls required for document change management.

It is the Synergy viewpoint that is most interesting. The product supports two roles--Author and Contributor. The Author is the only person that ever has write-access to a controlled document. When a draft is completed and it needs to be sent for review, individual clean copies with no metadata are generated and sent to contributors. This avoids any possibility of previous documents' contents being visible.

Contributors can make changes to their own versions and then return them to the author. Synergy then allows all the versions to be viewed and compared simultaneously so that the author can choose the changes that are required. It's simplicity itself but it gets around a whole load of problems that Microsoft, so far, has not really addressed.

Most of us probably don't realise that we have this problem. None of us would invest in a full blown document management solution to address it. The choice is between manual procedures or a simple software solution. People forget, computers don't.

© IT-Analysis.com. All rights reserved.

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story


Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.