Samsung Ships Solid State Drives with Full Encryption

Samsung Launches SSDs with Full Disk Encryption

by Anton Shilov
04/17/2009 | 10:34 PM

Solid-state drives (SSDs) are indisputably gaining popularity these days, however, flash-based storage still cannot satisfy all the users to due to various limitations. Samsung Electronics has launched the world’s first SSD that features full disk encryption technology (FDE) that will make such devices useful for enterprise, government and other customers requiring maximum security.


“Samsung has combined the tremendous performance advantages of solid state technology with integrated hardware encryption for drives designed especially for today's 'road warrior' professionals. Business users now get the best of performance and security in a single drive,” said Jim Elliott, memory vice president of Samsung Semiconductor.

Samsung's new 256GB, 128GB, and 64GB SSDs are the first solid state drives to incorporate hardware-based encryption, which has made headlines in recent weeks with publication of the industry's Opal storage specification published by the Trusted Computing Group (TCG). Samsung self-encrypting SSDs will be available in both 1.8" and 2.5" form factors; the 1.8" being the world's first encrypted storage drive of this size. Other specifications of the new SSDs have not been announced.

Benefits of hardware encryption over today's software-only encryption approaches include faster performance, better security and an "always on" feature. Because encryption keys and access credentials are generated and stored within the drive hardware, they never leave its confines and are never held in the operating system or by application software. This hardware FDE approach is considered more secure and less complex to manage.

Each Samsung self-encrypting SSD, when ordered in a new computer, now comes bundled with Wave Technologies’ Embassy Trusted Drive Manager for complete life cycle management of the drive including pre-boot authentication to the drive and enrolling drive administrators and users. Trusted Drive Manager also enables the backup of drive credentials.

Available separately, Wave's Embassy Remote Administration Server allows an IT administrator to remotely turn on each solid state drive in seconds and provides detailed event logs for compliance to prove that the security settings were in place when a loss or theft occurs.