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Seagate crypto gets Gov. approval

Seagate crypto gets Gov. approval

Thanks to its AES encryption, you've as much chance of reading the data by staring at this picture if you haven't got the keys.

If you're worried about your collection of flesh-toned pictures going walkabouts, perhaps you'd better invest in a Seagate Momentus 5400 FD.2 hard drive. After all, that's what the government does.

According to BetaNews, the US government has given the built-in AES encryption system in the Momentus drives its official seal of approval, in the form of National Security Telecommunications and Information Systems Security Policy #11 certification.

The 256-bit AES encryption on the drive acts transparently to keep data away from prying eyes, and was granted National Institute of Standards certification last year. The NSTISSP certification expounds on NISTs testing, and certifies that the drive is secure enough for storage of secrets by the No Such Agency.

The built-in encryption on the drive, which requires authentication before the drive will divulge any data and which can be set to automatically zero itself when intrusion attempts are detected, will certainly go some way to ensure that future laptops lost by the government – something our government doesn't exactly have a good track record regarding – could become less of an issue in future.

That said, if they'd used something like Gnu Privacy Guard or TrueCrypt in the first place, they wouldn't have needed a hard drive with built-in cryptography to restore public confidence.

Tempted to snag a government-grade encrypted hard drive, or is nothing you own that secret? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

7 Comments

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liratheal 16th May 2008, 10:03 Quote
For the home user that souinds mostly like a gimmick.. I want some, please >.>

Any word on prices to use non-government types?
Xtrafresh 16th May 2008, 10:25 Quote
This will not help one bit. I work for governments now and then, and there are USB-sticks and open network drives EVERYWHERE. (no, not on my hardware, tyvm).

This is not a hardware problem, it's a mentality problem. That means hardware could never solve it.
liratheal 16th May 2008, 11:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xtrafresh
This will not help one bit. I work for governments now and then, and there are USB-sticks and open network drives EVERYWHERE. (no, not on my hardware, tyvm).

This is not a hardware problem, it's a mentality problem. That means hardware could never solve it.

It's the same in a number of the customers for a company I work for. I mean, people that deal with financial advice, and other personal things (The other day I was working on a PC, and there was quite a number of doccuments marked confidential just left open on the desk), leave things all over the place for all to see, and we've (The company I work for) never been asked to sign a confidentiality agreement, or anything of the sort. It's really quite scary, the fact we trust (At least, sort of) these people to keep this stuff private and confidanetial, but anyone with eyes in their head could go and see it?
Firehed 16th May 2008, 14:55 Quote
So how does this function from a user perspective? Surely it just requires a password at boot, in which case a clever somebody could rig up some sort of hardware-level keylogger and bypass the encryption entirely, right?
knyghtryda 16th May 2008, 18:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firehed
So how does this function from a user perspective? Surely it just requires a password at boot, in which case a clever somebody could rig up some sort of hardware-level keylogger and bypass the encryption entirely, right?

If someone can get physical access AND rig up a hardware keylogger AND return and take the drive the you have a much bigger problem on your hands than just encryption. Security is only as good as the weakest link, and if you're weakest link is a box that anyone can walk up to and tinker with the hardware... well... thats like a locked bank vault with no guards and no security cameras.
Max Spain 16th May 2008, 19:16 Quote
These drives are not designed for the security of the owner. Drive Trust is Trusted Computing for hard drives. In other words, the security isn't for the user's sake.
Quote:
ISVs and other developers can write applications and have them assigned to a secure partition in the drive through the issuance protocol.
That quote was taken from here. I sure do miss the time when computer hardware was designed solely for the benefit of the end user :(
leexgx 19th May 2008, 21:51 Quote
if the password is entered to many times and fails the disk 000000 it self (i asume it most likey go for the private keys first)
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