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Lexar Locks Down USB Storage

Digital media specialist Lexar has stepped into the storage arena with a USB device it claims will help enterprises and government agencies lock down critical data. (See Lexar Ships SAFE PSD.)

Lexar today introduced the enterprise SAFE PSD 1100 to its range of personal Flash drives. The device is designed to address growing user concern about removable media. (See VA Reports Massive Data Theft, Los Alamos Fallout Continues, NASA Goes to the Dark Side, and Houston, We've Got a Storage Problem.)

Akil Houston, Lexar's senior product marketing manager, told Byte & Switch that his firm is taking a significantly different security approach to the competition, which incldues established USB players such as Kingston Technology and SanDisk, which recently acquired msystems. (See Kingston Intros Drives and SanDisk Buys msystems.)

Other USB vendors, says Houston, typically use software within their devices to access a feature within Windows called "autorun". This enables the device to automatically access the operating system when it is plugged into a laptop or a PC, although there is concern that autorun could be used by a crafty hacker to slip malware and viruses into an organization. (See Social Engineering, the USB Way.)

Lexar's 1100, on the other hand, does not rely on pre-loaded autorun software. "In order to use the device, it needs a device driver that is downloaded through Windows update via the Internet," says Houston. "Once the driver is installed, you have to provide a password."

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