What security technologies do Ciphertex Storage products use?
Ciphertex products currently use Hardware Key security. Hardware Security is by far the most thorough, cost-effective, and easily implemented form of advanced security. It is more secure than conventional password-based systems. Future products will incorporate more advanced methods of security.
What is Hardware Based encryption?
Encryption is a sophisticated mathematical calculation (or algorithm) combining a "Secret Key" and unencrypted text. The resulting "cipher text" is an unreadable code that can only be decrypted with the original "Secret Key". The hardware encryption, performed by the encryption microchip, delivers significant performance improvement over software encryption, works with every operating system found today, and requires no additional training to use. This encryption methodology protects your valuable data with minimum Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).
How does Ciphertex Secure Drive Product Operate?
An Encryption Engine residing between the PC and the SATA Drive performs the encryption/decryption function. It intercepts, interprets, translates, and relays REAL-TIME SATA commands and data to and from the disk drive, encrypting the data with the AES-256 algorithm. The following illustration best describes how the security chipset functions.
What is the Hardware Key and why use it?
The Hardware Key is a physical key that contains the "Secret Key" necessary for encryption and decryption operations. The hard drive must be partitioned and formatted using the Hardware Key the first time the hard drive is used. When complete, the entire content of the hard drive is associated with the unique Hardware Key. Only a Hardware Key containing the identical "Secret Key" can be used for authentication and decryption of the hard drive at power up.
Do I need to establish a separate "encrypted folder" under file directory as required by some software solutions?
No. Everything you write to the disk drive is automatically encrypted. There is no need to establish a separate "encrypted folder".
Does Encryption Engine increase the original file size after encryption?
No. AES-256 is a complicated mathematical algorithm that encrypts the original data with a 256-bit key. Regardless of the size of the encryption key, the size of data file after encryption remains unchanged. All Data on the Drive is encrypted including the File system information.
Can Ciphertex Storage products work with any operating system?
With the exception of the CX-Ranger, Ciphertex External Drives and RAID systems require no device drivers and are independent from all operating systems. A host controller with a USB or SATA mass storage driver typically provided by the OS is required. The only requirement is a SATA compliant disk drive.
Do Ciphertex Drives support 48-bit LBA addressing?
Yes, Ciphertex Encrypted Storage products support 48-bit LBA addressing that removes the previous ATA 137 GB drive size limitation. Large Disk Drive capacities greater than 2 TB are possible.
How do I know my Ciphertex Encrypted Storage products are really secured?
The AES-256 hardware engine utilized by the Encryption Engine has been certified by the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology). These hardware algorithms are certified to provide the highest level of security; at full strength it is virtually impossible to access the encrypted data by guessing or deriving the right AES-256 Key. Because everything on the disk is encrypted, your data is safe even if attackers try to boot from their own disk, or to move your disk to an unprotected machine.
Can I remove the Hardware Key while my PC is on?
Yes, you can remove the Hardware Key for safekeeping after your operating system has fully loaded. Remember that the Hardware Key MUST be used again the next time you power up your system.