Re: [R] encrypted RData file?

From: Berton Gunter <gunter.berton_at_gene.com>
Date: Fri 28 Oct 2005 - 08:22:58 EST


May I suggest that further discussion of this issue be directed to R-Devel.

"The business of the statistician is to catalyze the scientific learning process." - George E. P. Box    

> -----Original Message-----
> From: r-help-bounces@stat.math.ethz.ch
> [mailto:r-help-bounces@stat.math.ethz.ch] On Behalf Of Marc
> Schwartz (via MN)
> Sent: Thursday, October 27, 2005 2:56 PM
> To: Roger D. Peng; Na Li
> Cc: r-help@stat.math.ethz.ch; Duncan Temple Lang
> Subject: Re: [R] encrypted RData file?
>
> On Thu, 2005-10-27 at 16:15 -0500, Na Li wrote:
> > On 27 Oct 2005, Duncan Temple Lang wrote:
> >
> > > Yes, it is of interest and was sitting on my todo list at
> > > some time. If you want to go ahead and provide code to do it,
> > > that would be terrific. There are other areas where encryption
> > > would be good to have, so a general mechanism would be nice.
> > >
> > > D.
> > >
> > > Na Li wrote:
> > > > Hi, I wonder if there is interest/intention to allow
> for encrypted .RData
> > > > files? One can certainly do that outside R manually
> but that will leave a
> > > > decrypted RData file somewhere which one has to
> remember to delete.
> > > >
> >
> > I was hoping someone has already done it. ;-(
> >
> > One possibility is to implement an interface package to
> gpgme library which
> > itself is an interface to GnuPG.
> >
> > But I'm not sure how the input of passphrase can be handled
> without using
> > clear text.
> >
> > Michael
>
> Seems to me that a better option would be to encrypt the full
> partition
> such that (unless you write the files to a non-encrypted partition)
> these issues are transparent. This would include the use of save(),
> save.image() and write() type functions to save what was an encrypted
> dataset/object to a unencrypted file.
>
> Of course, you would also have to encrypt the swap and tmp partitions
> (as appropriate) for similar reasons.
>
> On Linuxen/Unixen, full encryption of partitions is available via
> loopback devices and other mechanisms and some distros have this
> available as a built-in option. I believe that the FC folks
> finally have
> this on their list of functional additions for FC5. Windows of course
> can do something similar.
>
> The other consideration here, is that if R Core builds in some form of
> encryption, there is the potential for import/export restrictions on
> such technology since R is available via international CRAN
> mirrors. It
> may be best to provide for a plug-in "encryption black box"
> of sorts, so
> that folks can use a particular encryption schema that meets various
> legal/regulatory requirements.
>
> Of course, simply encrypting the file or even a complete partition has
> to be considered within a larger security strategy (ie. network
> security, physical access control, etc.) that meets a particular
> functional requirement (such as HIPAA here in the U.S.)
>
> HTH,
>
> Marc Schwartz
>
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https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html Received on Sat Nov 05 00:58:42 2005

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