Network Computing is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Quantum Steps Up Security

Quantum Corp. today unveiled its security plans for the coming year, touting new electronic keys, encryption, and physical locks in an effort to address users fears about data loss (See Quantum Unveils Strategy.)

First up is the new firmware-based key, which will be built into future versions of Quantum’s tape drives. The idea is that as the cartridge is read, the drive compares the key on the tape to the key supplied by the library. According to Quantum, IT managers can use a GUI to assign keys, and data will only be unlocked if the keys match.

An IT manager at a Midwestern manufacturer who asked not to be named, says that the keys could prove useful. “Our management is looking into how to address this type of thing,” he explains, adding that the keys will enable him to lock down the drives and better control who gets access to what. “We’re like everybody else -- we send our tapes off-site and we rely on our vendor to keep them secure,”

Mark O’Malley, Quantum’s manager of strategic marketing, told Byte and Switch that the key will be available as a firmware download for the recently launched DLT-V4 drive in the first quarter of next year. The vendor is also building the key into its new DLT-S4 drive, which is slated for a Q1 launch.

Controlling access to disk and tape media is big news at the moment, following a series of high-profile data losses. Earlier this year, for example, Time Warner made headlines when a truckload of backup tapes containing information on hundreds of thousands of employees went missing. (See A Tale of Lost Tapes, Tape Security Trips Up Users and A Tale of Lost Tapes.)

  • 1