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Is your secure USB flash drive really secure?

Jan 12, 2010, 11:02 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols)


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"If you're like me, you've taken to carrying important data on USB sticks or flash drives. They're handy, you can use them on any PC, and with built-in encryption even if you lost them it was no big deal. Bad news: It's now a big deal.

"The German security company SySS GmbH discovered that many, but not all, of today's encrypted USB sticks and flash drives are actually vulnerable to a relatively easy attack. It is not that the encryption itself-usually AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) encryption--that has been broken. It hasn't been. Despite what you may have read from some fear-mongers, AES remains unbroken.

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