April 26th
2012

The Truth About Self-Encrypting Drives

self encrypted driveThere are many inaccurate assumptions on the differences between software and hardware encryption, management and even the benefits. Self-encrypting drives (SEDs) can be an effective tool in your data protection arsenal.

The launch of Credant Manager for Self-Encrypting Drives (part of Credant Enterprise Edition 7.3) was significant in a couple of ways, and it’s something I hear from both inside and outside the organization as our customers start to look at it and make plans to upgrade.

The first is that it recognizes a growing trend in the IT security industry – the re-evaluation of hardware-based encryption like self-encrypting drives (SEDs) as not only a viable choice to keep data secure, but a sensible and economic one too.

SEDs are very powerful tools, but like all security tools they need self-encrypting drive management, and it’s the lack of well integrated and simple to use management tools that has been partly responsible for their relatively slow adoption.  Cost was certainly another factor.  However it’s clear that as price points for SEDs fall (and more and more systems will be available with SEDs as a standard choice) then the time has come to look closely at what they provide.

One of the great things about SED technology is that it provides the simplicity of full-disk encryption (FDE) without the painful management overhead and user impact of older software-based approaches.  SEDs are reliable, fast and far easier to roll out and live with than software FDE.  With the publication of the OPAL standard, and the growing number of

As a result, supporting them and making it easier for our customers to deploy, manage and integrate is an obvious choice for us.

Which brings me to the second reason that this launch was highly significant: it continued the process of building out Credant’s Data Protection Platform approach which we’ve been talking about for some time.  The idea is simple – data moves faster than ever, and on more devices than ever, and we are working hard to make sure that information is protected across its full lifecycle.  So adding support for this important and growing technology is both obvious and essential.

SEDs are important, and with the right management tool, they can be a lifesaver in the event of a breach – so take a look at what we’re doing with the 7.3 release and let me know what you think.

In the meantime, let me tell you a little more about what we see on the horizon for the Data Protection Platform and why the concept of data lifecycle protection is so important.  But that’s for next time!

 

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