In the modern world, it’s far more convenient to hold information digitally and one of the simplest ways to achieve this is with the use of a USB flash drive. Easy to use, compact in size and convenient to transport, it’s now possible to save vast amounts of data on one small stick.
But while it has undoubted advantages, security remains the one big potential flaw. It’s not difficult to lose a USB and if it falls into the wrong hands, that means any personal data being held will too. The new wave of USB flash drives have found a way to circumvent this problem offering a way to encrypt your data without the process being too onerous. Here’s a look at one of the best examples of this technology to hit the market: the datAshur PRO®.
Simple To Use
If you’ve never seen one of these babies in action, prepare to be impressed as this is one smooth piece of kit. Providing a hardware solution to the question of security, the encryption is XTS-AES 256-bit military grade and yet remains surprisingly simple to use.
One of the first things you’ll notice is that this USB seems bigger than average at 78 x 18 x 8mm and that’s because it houses a keypad. Think of a miniaturised mobile phone pad on your USB and you’ll get the idea. To use the USB at any time you’ll first need to press the key button before entering your pin number (or word) and then pressing the key button again. You then plug the USB into a compatible port and you’ll be up and running.
It really is as simple as that. The pin number can be anything from 7-15 digits long and it’s up to you how complex you want it to be. The pad is alphanumeric, like a phone keypad, so it you prefer to use a word rather than a number, this is possible too.
You’ll obviously need to change the pre-set pin number it comes with, 11223344, but yet again it’s a process that won’t frazzle your brain, even if you’re relatively new to this type of technology. It’s very similar to the process of unlocking the pad except you press the key button twice instead of once, and repeat the cycle again to confirm.
It’s certainly easy to use and offers top notch security but how does it hold up when used regularly? The device scores big brownie points from the start as the aluminium casing can be laser etched with the owner’s details so that if any kind soul wants to return your lost USB, it’s easily achieved. When purchased directly, this is one of the customisation services offered as standard.
The datAshur comes with an epoxy coating to make it tougher on the outside, while the inside is sealed with a tamper-proof covering. Externally it’s also dust resistant and water resistant up to depths of 1 metre. The on-board keypad is designed for regular use and wear resistant which means you won’t suffer the irritation of the numbers and letters quickly rubbing off, leaving you guessing which buttons to press.
The device can be easily attached to a bag or keyring courtesy of the wire loop attached to the end, a convenient and thoughtful addition to the design.
Performance And Specifications
The dataShur PRO® comes in a variety of sizes starting with the entry level 8GB and moving up to the 16GB, 32GB and 64GB capacity drives. All provide the same features so it’s simply a question of size and affordability.
There’s no software at all on this USB 3.0 which means you’ll get to keep all of the memory for use. The other benefit to using hardware encryption only is that the datAshur cannot be bruce force attacked, nor is it vulnerable to key loggers nor malicious malware. You won’t need to update any software or drivers and there’s no need to install any encryption software onto your computer. It’s completely independent of the various platforms so as long as a device has a suitable USB port, it should be compatible for use.
Users have the option of choosing between read only and read/write mode and after 10 failed attempts to unlock the pin there’s a self-destruct feature which will protect your data. Once it’s unlocked there’s only a short time to plug it into the USB port before it locks again, and once its removed it automatically locks so you don’t need to worry about remembering to lock it yourself.
The encryption is completed in real time so won’t cause any lag in the performance. Generally you can expect speeds in the region of 98MB/s for reading and 44MB/s for writing (tested on 16GB model).
Excellent Investment To Protect Your Data
Whether you’re a business or an individual concerned about the security of your data on a USB drive, the datAshur PRO offers an easy solution. Very simple to use and operate and with some of the best encryption available, this USB flash drive does an excellent job of providing protection while remaining practical too.