British software developer Conseal Security has just launched a rather clever solution to the problem of securing the data on your portable media such as USB thumb drives and portable hard drives while at the same time maintaining fully centralized control of the management of those devices without breaking the bank.
Conseal USB is pretty cool in that it is, for a start, totally hardware agnostic: forget about being locked-in to particular hardware or a specific vendor, this solution will work with all your USB drives. A five license pack will allow you to manage the security of five devices from different manufacturers, mixing and matching different hardware without impacting upon the control you have.
The real beauty of this solution is how simple it is to implement though. Gone are the days of complex setup routines and configuration options capable of turning Stephen Fry into a mumbling wreck. At the heart of the Conseal solution is a triple whammy promise of encryption, management and control.
Encryption comes by way of a 'dual lock' AES-256 bit system to ensure your data is secured while on the move.
Management is provided courtesy of a simple cloud based management console accessible via your standard web browser or smartphone if you are on the move. This includes a complete audit trail of all access attempts against your devices, showing IP addresses, MAC addresses, drive serial numbers, system and login names etc.
Control is absolute: access rules can be specified and limited to person, device, domain or IP address range; you are alerted the moment anyone tries to access protected data and a remote self-destruct function ensures you can destroy the drive contents if it falls into the wrong hands.
It really is a simple solution to the increasingly serious problem of how to secure your data on the move, especially for the small business end of the market which does not have either the budgets for enterprise strength products nor the dedicated IT staff to administer them. Conseal USB can be implemented by the average home user in a matter of minutes, and fully customised management and access controls up and running after a few minutes more. OK, for the average home user it's probably overkill. After all, what home user really needs to be able to limit access to a USB thumb drive based upon IP range or specified times of the day? But it's nice to know that granularity of control is available of needed, and once moved into the business sphere starts making a lot more sense anyway.
Everyone, though, can benefit from getting an email alert whenever someone tries to unlock the data on a protected USB device. That email will detail who has attempted to unlock the card, the computer that was used and whether the attempt was successful. unsuccessful attempts probably being the more useful, as these enable you to decide whether you want to play with the big guns of control that Conseal USB provides. Namely the self-destruct option which will securely wipe all the data from the specified drive, remotely and at the touch of a button.Step by step: how to add secure cloud data control to any USB drive
1. Select a drive to protect
2. Select a secure password
3. Install the Conseal security component
4. How long you have to wait depends on the size of the drive being Consealed
5. After a few minutes the drive will show as protected
6. Protected drives need to be unlocked before they can be accessed
7. Your cloud-based management console allows you to control who can access drives and when, as well as enabling the remote self-destruction of any data if the drive is lost or stolen