Review: LaCie's shockproof Rugged Safe data storage drive with built-in 128-bit AES encryption and easy-to-use fingerprint reader connects to your PC or Mac via USB 2.0 or FireWire.
warrior needs rugged and encrypted storage. Intellectual property, client lists
and contracts could fall into the wrong hands if stored on a removable device
that gets lost. It goes without saying that every corporate data asset in the
field today should be encrypted at the very least. Earlier in 2010 I reviewed rugged
and encrypted USB flash memory from BlockMaster, Lexar
I was impressed by the products' ruggedness, performance and security, but what
if I want to store and transport hundreds of gigabytes of data rather than
up to fill the gap in my life with the recent Rugged Safe 500GB portable hard
drive. This MIL-STD 810F Shock Proof 128-bit AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) hardware-encrypted
hard drive with USB 2.0 and FireWire 800 connections resembles
a metal box wrapped in soft silicone with a fingerprint reader in a perfectly
ergonomic groove on top. Designed by Neil Poulton of "Ageing Pens"
fame, the only thing that gives it away as a hard drive is the presence of USB, power and two FireWire ports on the
back (oh, and that it says LaCie on the bottom).
This is a
secure, able and good-looking portable hard drive with very easy-to-use biometric
authentication and strong encryption. It's not a centrally managed, enterprise-level
device; for example, this would be an entirely manual provisioning process. There's
no remote destruct feature or way to apply security policies other than through
the included software. The included Genie Backup software does a good-enough
job if you're backing up a single workstation.
As far as
ruggedness goes, this is almost certainly rugged enough to survive the typical
crashes and bounces that it would encounter in the briefcase of a corporate
road warrior, but I have my doubts about how it would survive the all-out
assault to which I subjected the flash memory. To be more specific, dropping it
off the desk is no problem, throwing it down a flight of stairs could be and
throwing it off the roof would probably destroy it.
the unit is $189.99 for the 500GB model and $299.99 for the 1TB version.