Self-Encrypting Hard Drives Face Perception Challenge

    Date10 May 2011
    CategoryCryptography
    3732
    Posted ByDave Wreski
    One-third of security professionals who handle encryption don't understand self-encrypting hard disk drives. In particular, they're unsure whether the drives are better or worse than software-based encryption for preventing tampering, managing encryption, or handling authentication keys. Those findings come from a recent survey of 517 IT practitioners who are at least familiar with self-encrypting drives, conducted by Ponemon Institute, and sponsored by the Trusted Computing Group (TCG), which promotes hardware-based, vendor-neutral security specifications.

    Today, when full disk encryption is used on a PC, software-based approaches are the norm, with 85% of survey respondents saying that's their primary approach. According to the survey, however, 70% of IT professionals also think that self-encrypting drives would help their organization to protect data, but many worry about the related hardware cost. Perhaps counter-intuitively, 37% of respondents also said that they "would pay a premium" for related data security improvements, according to the study.

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