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Apricorn Gives Birth to a Faster, More Secure External Hard Drive

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Category: Hardware Published on Tuesday, 06 August 2013

The folks at Apricorn keep giving birth to new products - - - or reinventing older ones. The company’s latest newborn is the Aegis Padlock Fortress which is the latest in Apricorn’s line of high-security hard drives.

The new super secure drive ranges in price from $349 to $899, depending on capacity and whether you want a standard external hard drive or a solid state drive (SSD). The standard hard drives are available in 500BG, 750GB and 1 TB models (and are less expensive) and the SSDs are available in 128 GB, 256 GB and 512 GB.

As with other Aegis drives, the Padlock Fortress connects to your computer via its USB port, but this time it supports the faster USB 3.0 standard. Also, as with its older siblings, the drive is hardware encrypted and your need to punch in a passcode on the drive’s keypad to get at the data stored on it.

But that is where the similarities to its predecessors ends.

The Fortress Padlock is the first USB 3.0 drive to receive FIPS 140-2 validation, which, according to the company, fits the requirements for the government, military and healthcare industries. This means that it “meets and exceeds 11 cryptographic security metrics, covering physical security, cryptographic key management and design integrity.”

All we know is that it works well, no matter what operating system you use or how you’re using it. We used it with a variety of PCs and laptops and were unable to breach the security system until the passcode was entered correctly.

Other key features include:

·         The 7 to 16-digit passcode is stored on the drive rather than the computer.

·         Military grade AES-XTS 256-bit hardware encryption.

·         You’re forced to set up your passcode (or PIN) before you can use the drive for the first time.

·         Encryption key are randomly generated, which allows unlimited redeployment of the drive.

·         It works with any operating system because there’s no software to install and there are no administrator rights.

·         It’s tamper resistant and can fend off water and dust.

·         Auto-lock protects your data when you’re away from your computer.

·         Drive reset clears PIN numbers and data, enabling the drive to be reset and reused an infinite number of times.

Check out the company’s website at www.apricorn.com for more information.

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Attention Facebook users: Check out Michael Berman's Jocgeek fan page at www.facebook.com/jocgeek, or follow him on Twitter @jocgeek.  You can also contact him via email at jocgeek@earthlink.net.  Mike's blog can also be found on the Huffington Post website at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-l-berman/.