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Skiff, an end-to-end encrypted alternative to Google Docs, raises $3.7M seed – TechCrunch

Imagine if Google Docs was end-to-end encrypted so that not even Google could access your documents. That’s Skiff in a nutshell. Skiff is a document editor with a similar look and feel to Google Docs, allowing you to write, edit, and collaborate in real-time with colleagues, with privacy baked in. Because the document editor is built on a foundation of end-to-end encryption, Skiff doesn’t have access to anyone’s documents — only users and those invited to collaborate do.

It’s an idea that has already attracted the attention of investors. Skiff’s co-founders, Andrew Milich (CEO) and Jason Ginsberg (CTO) announced today that the startup had raised $3.7 million in seed funding from venture firm Sequoia Capital over a year since Skiff was founded in March 2020. Alphabet chairman John Hennessy, former Yahoo chief executive Jerry Yang, and Eventbrite co-founders Julia and Kevin Hartz also participated in the round. Milich and Ginsberg told TechCrunch that the company would use the seed funding to grow the team and build the platform.

Google Docs

The boat isn’t much different from WhatsApp or Signal, which are end-to-end encrypted underneath their document editor. “Instead of using it to send messages to a bunch of people, we’re using it to send little pieces of documents and then piecing those together into a collaborative workspace,” said Milich. However, the co-founders acknowledged that putting your sensitive documents in the cloud requires users to put a lot of trust into the startup, particularly one that hasn’t been around for long. That’s why Skiff published a whitepaper with technical details of how its technology works and has begun to open source parts of its code, allowing anyone to see how the platform works. Milich said Skiff has also undergone at least one comprehensive security audit, and the company counts advisors from the Signal Foundation to Trail of Bits.

It seems to be working. In the months since Skiff soft-launched through an invite-only program, thousands of users — including journalists, research scientists, and human rights lawyers — use Skiff daily, with another 8,000 users on a waitlist. “The group of users that we’re most excited about are just regular people that care about privacy,” said Ginsberg. “There are just so many privacy communities and people that advocate for these products that care about how they’re built and have lost trust in big companies.” “They’re using us because they’re excited about the vision and the future of end-to-end encryption,” he said.


I have always enjoyed writing and reading other people's blogs. I started writing a journal as a teenager and have since written numerous books and articles. My blog is a place where I can write freely about my personal interests and those of others.

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