The following Frequently Asked Questions and answers provide the background and supporting information for Netlok’s innovative privacy and security solutions as well as the advantages of its products. The specifics instructions on how to use the products are available in the User Guide, which contains step-by-step instructions with screen shots on how to use Netlok’s products.
Have more questions? You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can contact us by phone at (805) 283-4100.
FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions
Netlok is cybersecurity firm offering a low-cost, patent-protected password replacement technology that uses photos instead of passwords for login. This photo-based login is called Photolok®. The photos hide the user’s information and data, so it cannot be seen by the human eye nor scanned and detected by Artificial Intelligent and/or Machine Learning technologies. The proprietary encoding is so sophisticated that cybercriminals cannot attack the photos successfully with BOTS (automatic programmed algorithms) and other hacker tools to extract the information.
In addition to Photolok, Netlok offers the Netlokr®, which is a low-cost cybervault that uses the Photolok system for login, which can be used by small businesses, professionals, and other organizations as a secured Intranet. Both Photolok and the Netlokr have passed third-party penetration tests to verify their anti-hacking effectiveness and Netlok maintains third-party monitoring tools that track security events.
Privacy and Security. Netlok has a passion for privacy and security. We believe that every online user has the right to privacy and security while using online communication and information applications for economic and personal matters. Following this passion, Netlok does not have a backdoor whereby its employees can look at user photos and files, which allows Netlok to be a leader in the effort to provide low-cost privacy and security tools (Photolok and Netlokr) that fight cybercrime and provide client peace of mind.
Netlok protects privacy in three ways:
First, Netlok does not sell client information to third parties.
Second, Netlok minimizes the information it collects from its clients. We do not ask for your preferences, profile information, current location, etc. like most social media companies. We only ask for the following information: first name, last name, physical address, mobile phone with text capability, and email address. Payments for services are processed through PayPal and we do not record or store your credit card information. If you are part of a group account, the Group Account Owner is the only person required to provide an address and credit card information. For example, if a small company owner opened a group account, none of the employer’s members would have to provide their address and credit card information.
And, third, Netlok provides a low-cost cybervault called the Netlokr. The Netlokr closed ecosystem provides a multi-level security umbrella to protect each private Netlokr. Each private Netlokr is also in its own cell and not connected to other Netlokrs to prevent vertical and horizontal penetrations.
Netlok provides two primary hacker-resistant tools to fight cybercrime: a) the anti-hacker login process called Photolok and, b) a secure, safe room for private communications and file management called Netlokr. Photolok can be licensed separately by businesses and government organizations, while individuals, groups and all organizations can purchase a Netlokr account as a low-cost solution for its Intranet and/or private use.
Photolok is a password replacement that uses photos instead of passwords to login to an authorized Internet and/or Intranet site. Photolok is more effective than the password login process because 85% of online breaches originate with compromised passwords, which makes passwords the weakest point of Internet security. By replacing passwords with Photolok, the online user does not have to keep making their passwords longer nor change them more frequently to gain potential security. Instead the user clicks their pre-chosen photos in the two photo panels that appear on the Photolok login screen. With just two photo selections, the user enters their Netlok authorized Internet or Intranet destination. It’s that simple. To see a short video on how the login works, go to www.netlok.com and click the arrow on how it works.
- Photolok is user-friendly and does not require complicated rules to create a login photo.
- Photos are easier to remember than passwords.
- Changing the login photos takes only a few seconds.
- The user can use either Personal or Netlok provided photos.
- Only the individual user can look at their photos and documents – meaning, that even Netlok personnel cannot see a user’s photos. The user’s photos and information are private and controlled by the user.
- It’s not necessary to change entry photos every 90 days for Photolok to be highly effective.
To make it easy for first time users, Netlok provides a random group of photos during the account creation process and the user chooses 3 photos from the random group. The user labels each of these photos as “Regular Use.” Once saved, these photos will appear randomly in the photo login process, so they can enter a Netlok authorized Internet or Intranet website. Once in the Netlok system, the user can choose to upload personal photos or select other photos from the categories provided.
The login page has a command line “Forgot My Photos.” When the user clicks this command line and follows the directions on the screen, the user will be given a “temporary photo” to enter their Netlokr. Once they enter their Netlokr, the user can click “Manage My Photos” and locate their Regular Use photos to refresh their memory.
Most companies will have to decide what works best for their company and what are the best practices for their industry. Some of the advantages of using Photolok is that it only takes a few seconds to change a Regular Use photo, the photos are easy to remember and the user does not need to write them down. For individual users who take many selfies, they may want to change the photos more often to reflect the activities in their daily lives and/or significant events. The individual user will determine for themselves how often they want to change. However, we would recommend that they change at least one of the three photos every six months.
The best practices are:
- Do not show, describe, or share your photos with anyone.
- Do not post your photos on any social media site.
- Use “Single Use” photos in public areas or in situations where you think someone may be shoulder surfing or trying to see your photos.
- Use the “Duress” photo when entering unsafe situations (see 12 below).
A Single Use photo can only be used once to login to the Netlokr. Netlok provides the Single Use photo to protect users in unsecure situations, which we describe as “situational security.”
The user can also label a photo as “Duress” when they think that they could be entering a potentially unsafe situation. The Duress photo works like a silent alarm to notify others that the user has been forced to enter their Netlokr by an unauthorized party and they need help. Two alerts are executed when a Duress photo is clicked: 1) a text message and 2) an email message. The recipients of these alerts need to be advised in advance on the actions they should take upon receipt of the alert.
Netlok does not have a backdoor to look at user’s photos. Netlokr users control their photos.
When a user deletes their personal photos, the photos and the proprietary encoding are permanently destroyed. Netlok cannot recover them.
The Netlokr is a low-cost security cybervault that uses Photolok for its login and also provides Private Messaging and Private Files capabilities. The Netlokr multi-layered security system is a closed ecosystem that protects all private Netlokrs. Each private Netlokr sits in its own cell without connection to other users in order to prevent vertical and horizontal penetrations. The Netlokr environment is monitored 24/7/365.
- When the user sends a private message to another member, the message and its contents never leaves the security of the Netlokr. Instead the recipient receives a text or an email saying that there is a Private Message waiting for them in their Netlokr. The recipient can only read the contents of the private message by entering the security of the Netlokr, which prevents the message and contents from being intercepted in transmission by hackers who are constantly attacking email and text messaging.
- The sender (author) of a private message can Recall a Message by clicking the Recall icon next to the message. If the recipient has not seen or opened the message, the private message will disappear as if it had not been sent. If the recipient opened the message and did not download the contents, the message will disappear, and the recipient will not be able to retrieve any contents.
- The recipient of a private message cannot forward the private message of the sender. Instead, the recipient must contact the sender and ask them to send it to another party. This procedure protects both parties from leaks and mistaken distribution of information and contents.
- When a sender deletes a message, it is permanently deleted from their Netlokr and cannot be recovered by Netlok for the user. Therefore, the user must be absolutely sure that they want to delete the message and contents.
- The sender has an Audit Trail of every private message with contents that they send to another party. The Audit Trail records are stored in the Contacts section, which can be entered into by clicking Contacts on the tool bar. Once in the Contacts page, the sender locates the recipient and clicks the View/edit icon to see the records.
- Large files up to 250MB can be attached to a private message, including video files.
- When an account owner deletes a private file, it is permanently deleted and no one at Netlok can retrieve it. Therefore, the author of private files controls their files and must be absolutely sure that they want to destroy a file or files.
- Selected Private Files are automatically loaded to the Create Message process as attachments when the share icon is clicked.
- When a sender attaches private files to a private message, the private files are also recalled when the private message is recalled.
- When attached to a Private Message, the sender’s audit trail includes the private files, which can be viewed in the Contacts Book audit section.
Yes, the user can access their Netlokr with smart phones, tablets, laptops and desktops devices as long as they are connected to the Internet and have a solid signal strength of 1 bar or better. The speed and bandwidth of the Internet source affects the operating speed of the Netlokr.
Netlok treats non-paying parties as Guest. The account owner controls the invitation of guests. If a company is using the Netlokr as a private group Intranet tool for business and wants to protect all information and users from hackers, the best practice is to restrict who can invite a Guest. We recommend that only the Group Account Owner can invite guests.
If an individual Netlokr account user wants to communicate privately to a non-paying person, the individual account owner can send a Private Message to the non-paying person who will be treated as a Guest at no cost to either party for 30 days. The Guest will open a temporary Netlokr account and be able to read and send private messages with attachments to the original sender. At the end of 30 days, the Guest will have to decide whether or not to purchase an account to continue with their account.
Netlok limits the collection of personal information from its account owners because it does not sell private information to third parties. To open a Netlokr account, the account owner provides Netlok with their first and last name, address, mobile number with text messaging, and email address. To pay for the account, the credit card payments are processed through PayPal; therefore, Netlok does not collect or store any user credit card information in its databases. Finally, Netlok does not ask clients to provide personal preferences and profile information that could be sold or compromised in the future.
There is no such thing as a free lunch – especially, when it comes to your privacy and security. For a long time, the general public has believed that Internet software is free. But it’s not free because most free software vendors collect the client’s private information and sell it to third parties; otherwise, they would go out of business. Unfortunately, many of these third parties do not adequately protect the private information they receive and, as a result, almost every online user’s information has been compromised through major hacks reported in the news. Netlok has chosen to be a low-cost provider of cyber protection and not sell private information to third parties, and, therefore, must charge a nominal fee for its services.