Apricorn

Apricorn USB 3.0 drive certified to FIPS 140-2

Apricorn announced its new Aegis Padlock Fortress this week, a secure drive designed specifically for the stringent requirements of government, military and health care.

As the first USB 3.0 hardware-encrypted, PIN-authenticated drive to receive The National Institute of Standards and Technology's FIPS 140-2 Level 2 validation, the Padlock Fortress meets and exceeds 11 cryptographic security metrics, covering physical security, cryptographic key management and design integrity.

“When designing the Aegis Padlock Fortress, we wanted to create a drive that not only met, but exceeded the strictest security requirements set by the U.S. government, and our FIPS-validated drive does just that,” said Mike McCandless, vice president of sales and marketing for Apricorn. “As a part of a Data Loss Protection strategy, the Fortress provides hardware-based authentication and encryption, and we work with businesses to show just how easy this drive is to implement into their security policy.”

The Fortress can only be recognized by a computer’s OS after the correct seven- to 16-digit number or word has been entered on the attached keypad. The onboard keypad prevents hardware or software key logging and eliminates software having to autorun to authenticate the drive. In addition, encryption keys are randomly generated, allowing unlimited re-deployments of the drive.

All data on the drive is also protected by military-grade AES-XTS 256-bit hardware encryption, so users can't accidentally save unprotected files to the drive. In addition, all data remains encrypted even if the drive is removed from the enclosure.

To prevent physical tampering, an epoxy resin protects the encryption circuitry boundary, which, if tampered with, will destroy the circuit board and encryption chip. Brute force software attacks won't work either, as the drive's data is destroyed after 20 consecutively failed password attempts.

The Aegis Padlock Fortress requires no software updates or admin rights to function. With up to four user PINs and one admin, the drive can also be used as a secure business collaboration tool or for the transport of sensitive information.

Offered in capacities of up to 1TB, the Aegis Padlock Fortress is available either with a high-capacity hard drive or with a more rugged solid state drive. Pricing for the normal hard drive starts at $349 for a 500G model and scales up to $419 for a one terabyte unit. For the solid state drive, it's $399 for a 128G unit and $899 for a 512G model.

About the Author

John Breeden II is a freelance technology writer for GCN.

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