Jul 20, 2012

What's the best choice for a secure flash drive?

I have to do some work during my family vacation (grrrrrrr!), and as a result I need to pick up an encrypted flash drive before I go. Is there much difference between them, or anything in particular I need to watch out for? Also, are there any that stand out as superior?


I have always had good experience with Ironkey, but Imation acquired them around the start of the year.  Still if you see something in an Ironkey package, it might be a good pick up, and you might even be able to pick up one that is discounted.  It might be worth a look.

You might want to check out this review:

The Best Encrypted Flash Drives

"To get the skinny on the state-of-the-art in secure flash drives, we took five hardware-encrypted drives for test spins. The results? As far as security is concerned, it's all systems go. Three of the units--the Kingston DataTraveler 4000 Managed, the Kanguru Defender 2000, and the CMS CE-Secure Vault FIPS--are certified to Level 2 of the government's FIPS 140-2 security standard. The Imation Defender F200 ratchets that up to Level 3. The Apricorn Aegis Secure Key is being processed for Level 3 certification, though it is not yet certified.

Those last two drives add a bit of panache and intrigue to what otherwise appear outwardly to be garden-variety flash drives. Imation's Defender F200 has an integrated fingerprint scanner, while Apricorn's Aegis Secure Key has a PIN-entry keypad.

The Defender F200 and the Aegis Secure Key share an advantage beyond their hint of spy drama--they're operating-system and device agnostic. The other three drives in our roundup use client software interfaces to manage access to their data. This limits their use to Windows, OS X, and, in the case of the Kanguru Defender 2000, Linux. After you unlock the Defender F200 or the Aegis Secure Key with their hardware mechanisms, you can use them just as you would a normal USB flash drive. That means TVs, digital media adapters, printers, tablets, and laptops are all fair game."
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