Simon Bain admitted it was a bit selfish. He started working on a product for finding and encrypting files across multiple cloud storage services four years ago because he wanted to do that and no such service was out there.
Bain, who has spent several years pushing complicated document-management software, just released desktop and mobile apps called SearchYourCloud through his company, Simplexo, to let others search and encrypt documents with the storage services people use today. Bain said SearchYourCloud’s release will be able to ride the wave of a couple of big trends.
SearchYourCloud acknowledges that employees use Dropbox, Box, Google (s goog) Drive, Microsoft (s msft) Exchange and other easy-to-use services for both personal and business use. That’s why the software doesn’t automatically encrypt every file. It only encrypts those files that users select, and it keeps them in a separate SearchYourCloud folder on Dropbox or another service. Meanwhile, SearchYourCloud is also a nod to the fact that employees don’t just use one single cloud storage service. A search of, say, Dropbox doesn’t always immediately turn up a given document.
Currently, with Windows desktop and iOS apps, Simplexo lets customers search through Dropbox, Exchange and Sharepoint, and it can search through users’ desktop files as well. Support for Box.net, Evernote and Google Drive is on the way on the storage side, and Android and Windows Mobile and desktop Mac support on the app side. Bain said he would like to add the capability for searching across backup instances on Amazon (s amzn) Web Services’ S3 service and other locations later this year.
While Bain is eager to gain enterprise adoption of SearchYourCloud, he might be facing a moving target. IT departments could enforce more rules on where documents can be stored, and cloud storage providers could provide cross-cloud search tools. Other companies with either document encryption or cross-cloud searching could add the other feature and compete directly with Simplexo. Until then, SearchYourCloud appears to be a much-needed crutch.