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RunCore launches InVincible self-destructing SSDs

RunCore launches InVincible self-destructing SSDs

RunCore's poorly-named InVincible SSD following the self-destruct sequence. Note the ever-so-slightly redundant ESD warning symbol.

Solid-state storage specialist RunCore has announced a new range of solid-state drives (SSDs) with an intriguing feature designed for the lucrative paranoiac market: a physical self-destruct button.

Dubbed the RunCore InVincible range - ironic, considering the primary selling point of being completely vincible on demand - the system supports two different methods of data destruction. The first overwrites the drive with gibberish, using what the company claims is an 'intelligent' algorithm to ensure no data is recoverable.

The second method is slightly more impressive: it applies a high current to the NAND flash memory modules themselves, physically destroying the hardware and ensuring that nothing will be recoverable - including the drive itself.

Described by RunCore in understated fashion as 'less subtle,' the company is hoping the technology will find favour with data security types in the aerospace and military fields, as well as to help protect trade secrets across multiple industries.

To operate the physical destruction system, the RunCore drive comes with externally-mounted buttons linked to a specially-constructed power and data cable. Press the big red panic button and the data - and drive - go away, permanently.

RunCore's InVincible drives are, clearly, a niche product - so much so, in fact, that the company hasn't bothered to publicise capacities or performance details, preferring instead to focus on the fireworks available at the press of a button. For markets where security is key, however, this is likely to prove a winning strategy - and it hardly even matters that RunCore isn't sharing the price, either.

To demonstrate the capabilities of its self-destruct system, RunCore has released a video showing a drive going pop.

17 Comments

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The_Beast 17th May 2012, 11:04 Quote
Shirty 17th May 2012, 11:46 Quote
The top rated comment on that Youtube video gave me an internet chuckle.
longweight 17th May 2012, 11:57 Quote
I want one.
mclean007 17th May 2012, 13:14 Quote
Mr. Glitter, your new paedo-drive has arrived.
Ending Credits 17th May 2012, 14:18 Quote
I remember when the big chip manufacturers had this function on their CPUs. :D
Kernel 17th May 2012, 17:16 Quote
Surely with that cable solution, it should work on any SSD or does that just send a signal to a hardwired component on the board
Tangster 18th May 2012, 09:10 Quote
That shuttle PC they hooked it up to is very, very close to the edge of the desk.
Gareth Halfacree 18th May 2012, 10:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tangster
That shuttle PC they hooked it up to is very, very close to the edge of the desk.
That's their system for destroying data on spinning drives: repeatedly drop the PC off the edge of the desk...
PureSilver 18th May 2012, 23:28 Quote
Looks to me like the only 'custom' bit of this is the wiring - surely if you supplied any SSD with that wiring (which supplies an unsurvivable amount of current) it would be similarly cooked?
Gareth Halfacree 19th May 2012, 01:05 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by PureSilver
Looks to me like the only 'custom' bit of this is the wiring - surely if you supplied any SSD with that wiring (which supplies an unsurvivable amount of current) it would be similarly cooked?
Current isn't something "supplied" by a wire, but demanded by a device. You could connect an SSD to a 5000A supply, and it wouldn't do the slightest bit of harm (aside from being woefully inefficient.)

Putting RunCore's cable onto a typical SSD will do nothing. The InVincible SSD has hardware inside which listens for the press of the killswitch and then demands vast quantities of current to fry the hardware.
3lusive 19th May 2012, 09:42 Quote
That's awesome. I love niche products.
Mankz 19th May 2012, 10:53 Quote
Awesome idea, though I won't be having one.
Ending Credits 19th May 2012, 12:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mankz
Awesome idea, though I won't be having one.

...what?
AmEv 19th May 2012, 16:27 Quote
He's just nervous about kids wondering how to turn the computer on, and end up simultaneously pressing BOTH red buttons.
mclean007 20th May 2012, 08:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ending Credits
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mankz
Awesome idea, though I won't be having one.

...what?
He won't be having an awesome idea :D
mclean007 20th May 2012, 08:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gareth Halfacree
Quote:
Originally Posted by PureSilver
Looks to me like the only 'custom' bit of this is the wiring - surely if you supplied any SSD with that wiring (which supplies an unsurvivable amount of current) it would be similarly cooked?
Current isn't something "supplied" by a wire, but demanded by a device. You could connect an SSD to a 5000A supply, and it wouldn't do the slightest bit of harm (aside from being woefully inefficient.)

Putting RunCore's cable onto a typical SSD will do nothing. The InVincible SSD has hardware inside which listens for the press of the killswitch and then demands vast quantities of current to fry the hardware.
Agreed. You could deliver a large over-VOLTAGE to any SSD and likely brick it by fritzing the control chips and/or power regulation circuitry, but you'd have no guarantee of having killed the NAND. A determined attacker with enough resources and time (e.g. a governmental intelligence agency or a rival big corporation) could theoretically transfer the NAND chips to another device and read their contents.

You could achieve a more robust solution with fusible links in the NAND circuit design itself, which would mean you'd need to perform some very delicate microcircuit repair surgery to get at the data, and that makes the challenge of recovering the data for even the most well-equipped and skilled attacker somewhere between exceptionally difficult and impossible, but the data would still be there. RunCore appears to have gone further than this by packaging the NAND chips in a device which, when a killswitch condition is detected, draws a current large enough to destroy the chips with heat - it looks like the chip packaging itself is cracked. The flash cells themselves will be destroyed, with no way to recover the data at all, much as if the whole drive had been incinerated.
Ending Credits 20th May 2012, 12:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mclean007
He won't be having an awesome idea :D

I was more worried because it seems like half their market has just vanished :D
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