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Seagate ships 'first' encrypting HDD in ASI laptop

Posted: 14 Mar 2007     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:encrypting hard drive  Serial ATA 3.0Gbps  Momentus 5400 FDE.2  AES  Seagate Technology 

Seagate Technology said that Momentus 5400 FDE.2 (Full Disc Encryption), the world's 'first' encrypting 2.5inch notebook PC hard disc drive, is shipping in ASI Computer Technologies' C8015 whitebook laptop system.

Based on perpendicular recording technology, Seagate's Momentus 5400 FDE.2 delivers up to 160GB of capacity and a fast Serial ATA 3Gbps interface. The drive also features AES 128-bit data encryption.

"Computer security is a growing concern for all of our channel customers, though fear of stolen laptops is especially acute," said Kent Tibbils, ASI senior director of platform technologies and marketing. "And for good reason: the theft of intellectual property, customer information and other precious content stored on laptops can cost organisations dearly in legal remedies and customer retention, to say nothing of the considerable cost of restoring one's name."

Hard drive protection
Momentus 5400.2 FDE provides an easy, cost-effective way to prevent unauthorised access to all notebook PC data, in case the system or disc drive is lost, stolen, retired or resold, said Seagate. The 5,400rpm drive's hardware-based full disc encryption delivers stronger protection against hacking and tampering than traditional encryption approaches by securely performing all cryptographic operations and key management within the drive.

For users, only a password is needed to self-authenticate for full drive access, while third-party enhancements enable thumb print and smart card options for multi-factor self-authentication. Moreover, no time-consuming disc initialisation or configuration is required to deploy the encrypting drive.

In addition, said Seagate, the drive offers superior system performance and battery life to software-based disc encryption. It also has cryptographic drive wiping (secure erase) of drives that are repurposed or retired as well as preboot authentication function to give users secure access to their notebook data. Moreover, Momentus 5400.2 FDE features a Full Trusted Platform Module (TPM) support for local cryptographic key backup and archive, providing key management capabilities for individual users to large organisations.

Protecting PC data
Meanwhile, the ASI C8015 will be the first notebook to use Seagate's encrypting hard drive and is expected to be available in April. It will feature a biometric fingerprint reader for stronger user authentication. The laptop will target healthcare, legal, finance, government and other industries requiring strong protection for information stored on laptop PCs.

The ASI C8015 will use Wave Systems Embassy Security Centre's Trusted Drive Manager, software that provides wizards to simplify setup and configuration of Momentus 5400 FDE.2 drives. Trusted Drive Manager enables administrators and users to easily create and back up passwords, and for administrators to control hard drive policies and security settings. The software also leverages Seagate's DriveTrust technology to allow administrators to instantly and easily erase all data cryptographically so the drive can be safely redeployed or discarded.

DriveTrust Technology is a security platform that combines strong, fully automated hardware-based security with a programming foundation that makes it easy to add security-based software applications for organisation-wide encryption key management, multi-factor user authentication and other capabilities that help lock down digital information at rest.

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