I need to send sensitive information from one piece of hardware to another. I was thinking wifi, but if someone obtains the password, it wouldn't be encrypted. I don't think you can use ssl unless it's a website, but I may be wrong. I don't know if it makes a difference, but it only needs to be one way.

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    You need to specify what sort of hardware, the distances involved, and the amount of data involved. The most secure is probably to display the information on one device while typing it into the other, but that only applies in very limited circumstances.
    – Mark
    Aug 5, 2014 at 8:21
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    You can use SSL. SSL is not limited to websites, it can encrypt arbitrary TCP connections. Aug 5, 2014 at 8:56
  • Secure against what? This is the primary question.
    – schroeder
    Aug 5, 2014 at 21:44
  • I apologize for not being able to give hardware specifics. The project is still being figured out. I appreciate the help though, guys. Aug 6, 2014 at 2:39
  • Do you have full control over both ends of the communication? If not, compatibility may constrain your choices. Also, for "full" security, you would need some kind of mechanism for regularly changing passwords, SSL certificates or the like. Apr 5, 2015 at 17:13

3 Answers 3


Depending on your available resources you could look into encrypted short burst radio transmissions.


That would definitely be the most secure one-way method.

With smaller means, just use regular internet connection and encrypt your file sharing. If the question were more specific, I could provide a more specific answer.

Web RTC possibilities seem interesting.

Or you could just encrypt the files and then send them with FTP, properly encrypted, it doesn't matter if someone intercepts them.

  • While that would protect the contents of the file, I question the use of unsecured FTP - a potential attacker would then have FTP access, and could place other (malicious) files, or perhaps even replace your intended file. I don't see any good reason to NOT use sFTP or an equivalent. Aug 5, 2014 at 13:53
  • I agree, the use of 'FTP' was a little careless. Most software clients/servers today support various protocols and as mentioned, there is no technical reason to have open or unsecured file servers.
    – Simply G.
    Aug 6, 2014 at 6:12

It would help if you'd be more specific (information type, hardware, connectivity of hardware, OS), though I use this occasionally when sending sensitive files from phone to PC or vice versa:

  1. Encrypt file on source (I use Symmetric Key Encryption).
  2. Setup FTP server on source.
  3. Open file explorer software on your PC (Graphically, "Explorer.exe" on Windows or the likes of "Nemo" on Linux) and type FTP address.
  4. Copy it from source.
  5. Decrypt it on the destination.

You can use a public-key IPSec VPN.

And, just so you know, SSL VPNs do exist!

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    @TildalWave How does this not answer the question? Too succintly to be really helpful, perhaps, but this is a possible solution, and a reasonable one too. Aug 5, 2014 at 13:19
  • @Gilles I think I must have pressed the wrong auto-comment option during my review. In my excuse, I was on a mobile device at the time. ;) My -1 still stays though for a lazy two links semi-answer that could as well be a comment instead. I'd recommend to OP reading our How to Answer page, it's all explained there what answers are we looking for here. I'll be glad to reverse my vote once our quality requirements are at least partially met in an informative answer that's actually here, where posted, not behind a few external links that might go dead in time.
    – TildalWave
    Aug 8, 2014 at 15:46

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