Protecting Mobile Data 

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Taking your data with you on the road can be useful. But how do you keep it safe? iStorage has a solution.

iStorage datAshur SD
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As a long-time user of various products from iStorage, I was keen to check out the company's latest offering.  The chance to do this arose with the arrival of the DATASHUR SD which promised the dual capacity of easy mobility and encrypted security of data accessible from different locations.

Giving the appearance of a lengthy USB stick drive, with measurements of 90 x 17 x 10 mm (L x W x D), the DATASHUR SD device could easily fit into a pocket or bag or be attached to a key-ring.  With its attractive anodized blue finish, the DATASHUR SD unit is constructed of an aluminium shell that iStorage claims can withstand the force implied by a 2.7 ton vehicle driving over it and with it being dropped from a height of 4 metres onto a concrete floor. 

The drive element resides in a protective sheath when it is not actually being used to providing access to data.  Removed from the sheath the DATASHUR SD gives have access to a Type C USB connection.  Widening the connectivity option is the presences of a Type C to Type A adapter for when you do not have the option of a Type C port for your device.

Decorating the front face of the DATASHUR SD unit is a two column arrangement of alpha-numeric keypad and three LED lights which indicate the different status mode the device can adopt.  Further protection is added to the unit with the presence of a layer of polymer coating over the keys which has the added benefit of not providing evidence of which keys might have been frequently used by somebody looking for clues as to which keys were used regularly.

The keypad is the feature that allows you to add security PIN data to the data content hosted by the device.  Situated on the right side of the DATASHUR SD unit is a slot into which an SD can be inserted.  The SD card feature, which explains the SD part of the product's title, provides the memory storing aspect of the product.  SD cards of up to 1TB in capacity, depending on your needs, can be handle by this product.  The whole unit is certified as being IP68 water and dust resistant which means you can submerge the device under 1.5 metres of water for 30 minutes if you fancy taking it for a swim.

While the SD card handles data storage, it is the DATASHUR unit which provides the other features of the product once it has been allocated an ADMIN PIN which can consist of between 8 - 64 digits in length.  Step-by-step instructions of how to carry out this task are provided in the supplied User Guide.

The DATASHUR SD product is powered by a 3.7V Lion battery, automatically recharged whenever attached to a port, and is built around a Common Criteria EAL5+ secure microprocessor.  This element provides  defence against hackers and includes features such as an Active Shield, True Random Number Generator, Enhance Protection Object, Glitch & Slope Detection, Built-in Parity Check plus Bare-metal Memory & Bus Encryption.  Data stored on the inserted memory card will be cloaked by AES-XTS 256-bit hardware encryption.

Along with the protective encryption feature, the DATASHUR SD feature's iStorage incorrect PIN timeout capability whereby the entry of ten incorrect PIN entries will result in the drive entering lockdown mode.  The entry of the Admin PIN will be required to remove this block.

The DATASHUR SD device is not limited to working with just a single memory card.  When necessary cards can be switched and can be assigned for use with different projects and their related documents.  However you do need to be aware that iStorage states that this product should only be used in partnership with memory cards bearing the iStorage brand.  My used of this product has been carried out using solely iStorage cards which have then been restricted to being used with just the DATASHUR SD device.

Packaged with the appropriate Type C to Type A adaptor, the DATASHUR SD product, as reviewed, is priced at £69.  This price does not include the required memory card.  A 32GB card with add an approximate £37 to the initial cost of this product for protecting your data when on the move.

At the time of publication the DataShur SD is available from Amazon for £82.80.

datAshur SD - iStorage (UK) (

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