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Seagate to Offer Encrypted Drives (Read 1695 times)

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Seagate to Offer Encrypted Drives
Sep 6th, 2007 at 12:43pm
September 6, 2007; Page B4

Disk-drive makers have long bragged about the amount of data they can store. Now they are racing to protect that information, too.

Seagate Technology of Scotts Valley, Calif., today is introducing drives for desktop personal computers that use special chips to encrypt information to make it unreadable if a computer equipped with the devices falls into the wrong hands.

Companies more commonly rely on software to encrypt data; government agencies have long preferred hardware to carry out data-scrambling chores, because it is harder to attack by unscrupulous programmers.

Seagate isn't alone. Rivals such as Hitachi Ltd. and Fujitsu Ltd. have announced drives with various forms of encryption.  Microsoft Corp. also is promoting a feature called BitLocker in some versions of its Windows operating system that can encrypt drives.

While some PC users encrypt their email to safeguard the contents against interception, the moves reflect a widening recognition that data are often exposed to greater risk when they are at rest in a computer -- particularly when a laptop goes missing. Consequently, the first encrypted drives were targeted at portable PCs.

With the new product it calls Barracuda FDE, however, Seagate is extending the capability to drives for desktop systems, responding to concerns that those machines also can be stolen.  The product, with a capacity of as much as a trillion bytes, uses the same strength of encryption used by government agencies, said Marc Jourlait, a Seagate vice president of global marketing.
Source:  Seagate to Offer Encrypted Drives

It appears that the demand for full disk encryption is increasing.

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