Chad Voss
Sep 18, 2023

How EchoMark works

How EchoMark adds forensic marks to documents and messages, and how to investigate leaks using those marks.

There are already many, complimentary, zero-trust solutions that function by keeping data constrained to a particular group. But anyone who has worked within those systems knows that there are legitimate needs (e.g. working with an external contractor, or collaborating across-groups on an important project) to share information out of those confines to get your job done. EchoMark protects these extra interactions through what we call marking.

What is marking?

EchoMark employs a variety of techniques to add identifiable information to your documents and messages without harming the consumption experience. Collectively, we refer to these as marks and each mark type is targeted at a different leakage method or behavioral outcome. Most people will want to use all of our marking methods for the extra levels of security they provide, but EchoMark provides settings to enable or disable them as needed.

Marking techniques

Digital stamp: Our Digital Stamp is a simple, unguessable key that is embedded in file metadata and identifies the document with a particular recipient. If the document leaks online somewhere, then this key can quickly be identified using our leak investigation tools.

Invisible watermark: EchoMark's invisible watermark is applied directly to the content of a document or message via minute formatting perturbations and it enables our leak investigation tools to identify the intended recipient of the document if it leaks as text, a screenshot or photo.

AI Rephrasing: When you have an incredibly sensitive message to send and you want protection even from leakage of individual phrases or snippets of your message, AI rephrasing allows you to generate completely unique, but semantically identical messages for each member of your audience.

Visible footnote: Distinct from the subtle marking methods above, our visible footnote is aimed at affecting the behavior of recipients rather than enabling leak investigations. The footnote we add at the bottom of every message and document provides a visible reminder to document recipients that the information being shared is meant for their eyes and should be handled carefully.

How marks are applied

Marks can be applied silently in the background and the process does not require client software. However, we offer Free and Individual accounts that enable solo users to get the benefits of document and message marking using the EchoMark web app. An Enterprise account allows your organization's admins to integrate EchoMark directly into your existing Microsoft Exchange or Google Workspace pipeline. With an Enterprise account, marking is controlled through policy set by your admin in the admin portal and end users can send marked messages and documents without ever interacting with EchoMark directly.

Investigating leaks

In the unfortunate case that one of your marked documents or messages leaks outside of its intended audience, EchoMark provides Leak Investigation tools to find the source of the leak. Knowing that information can leak in various formats, EchoMark allows you to investigate leaks of documents in whole or in part, screenshots (or mobile photos) of documents or messages, and even copied and pasted text from emails sent through EchoMark. Our UI provides an easy step-by-step process to generate a leak report that provides the best match for your leak along with transparent statistics to help you make an informed decision.
Learn more

That's EchoMark in a nutshell. If you want a more detailed look at the product, try it out yourself, or read about it in our support pages.