Paper spreadsheets containing financial planning and projections have always been zealously keep in privacy. The transition from paper spreadsheets to digital spreadsheets only strengthened this privacy requisite: one person could calculate thousands of formulas without needing anybody to recheck them.
To better satisfy this need for privacy, dozens of security products for spreadsheets have been developed over recent decades. They can be classified in the following areas:
- strong file encryption, to solve the problem of the weak encryption offered by commercial spreadsheet programs.
- data and formulas obfuscators, to ease sharing of spreadsheet files without revealing their contents: very complex software obfuscators have been developed to achieve this goal, but with uncertain mathematical underpinnings and no provable security.
- solutions for granular access-based controls that disallow some parts of a spreadsheet to some identities/groups.
The Secure Spreadsheet is the first program to offer provably-secure state-of-the-art cryptographically-secure secure computation to the general public: for the first time, joint secure calculations between potentially distrusting parties can now be used for very profitable purposes in accounting/finance/banking while maintaining the privacy of the input data, through the widely known spreadsheet user interface.