[Qgis-developer] Data encryption

Zoltan Szecsei zoltans at geograph.co.za
Wed Jan 29 21:48:50 PST 2014

Yep - I agree that it is a fruitless venture - quite frankly, even the 
"license to use" methodology gives one no real peace of mind.
When this request popped into my mailbox, I figured it was worth a shot 
putting it "out there", as I had not given this any thought for a number 
of years now.
Interestingly, nothing has changed.
It is local authority information, and I have very strong views that it 
should be "free to all", because public money was used to 
gather/assemble the data set in the first place.

But, as I said, the request was not from a South African authority, so 
maybe that (African) country still needs to go down that road.

Mankind is not known for learning from history :-)

Regards & thanks to all who gave some input.

On 2014/01/29 20:45, Alex Mandel wrote:
> I think authorities have tried to do this in the past with poor quality
> images and pdfs where all the layers are sandwiched together and not
> meant to be disassembled. So that the only way to extract the data
> beyond viewing is hand digitizing and recoding of the attributes.
> I agree with Denis though that a more sensible approach is to just state
> the time limits on the data. Or you can be nefarious like some road
> atlas producers and seed small fictitious data that makes it easier to
> catch people using the data improperly.
> Enjoy,
> Alex
> On 01/29/2014 12:22 AM, Denis Rouzaud wrote:
>> The best way is to provide your data with a proper disclaimer of use.
>> Trying to add some lock is just useless. Anyone who will really wants to
>> fully get or edit the data will still be able to do it.
>> You will just make your bundle less usable, and loose some time/money at
>> trying to implement this.
>> How do you think that the survey services are publishing the land
>> registry? For sure not on DVDs with DRM. But their data has time frame
>> validity and is supposed to be read-only....
>> Cheers,
>> Denis
>> On 29. 01. 14 09:10, Zoltan Szecsei wrote:
>>> On 2014/01/29 09:59, Alex Mandel wrote:
>>>> On 01/28/2014 10:53 PM, Zoltan Szecsei wrote:
>>>>> Hi List,
>>>>> I have a friend, not in South Africa, who has a need to bundle raster &
>>>>> vector data with a map viewer, so that the entire package can be
>>>>> deployed via a DVD.
>>>>> The catch is that usage of the data bundled with this DVD, needs to
>>>>> expire after 12 months.
>>>>> So, does anyone know of a QGIS based solution - even if it comes with a
>>>>> proprietary encryption module that allows for an expiry date?
>>>>> I'd be curious if anyone has implemented such solution.
>>>>> I also think that there may be a possibility of fee for someone to
>>>>> develop such capability.
>>>>> Regards and thanks,
>>>>> Zoltan
>>>> That's a pretty messed up product I wouldn't go anywhere near. But short
>>>> answer is this isn't a QGIS specific thing it's DRM which the Video Game
>>>> industry has plenty of solutions for, most of which are completely
>>>> circumventable by smart computer users.
>>>> Enjoy,
>>>> Alex
>>> Largely my thoughts too - but I didn't think of steering him towards
>>> the gaming industry.....
>>> Just to narrow down the prejudice a bit, what about a situation where
>>> a local authority is giving out a specific dataset that needs to be
>>> current, or at least non-editable?
>>> I expect one could watermark the datasets with a routine that the
>>> source-code is not available for. This watermark could have multiple
>>> date-stamps that would "help" in not being able to turn the computer
>>> clock back - and the data encryption could render it useless for
>>> anything except the viewer it came with - in QGIS case, the inclusion
>>> of a hook to the binary subroutine that encrypted (ok, messed up :-) )
>>> the data.
>>> Just a thought to stir up some discussion.
>>> Z
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Zoltan Szecsei PrGISc [PGP0031]
Geograph (Pty) Ltd.
GIS and Photogrammetric Service

P.O. Box 7, Muizenberg 7950, South Africa.

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Western Cape, South Africa.

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