SilverStone TS01 2.5-Inch SATA RFID External HDD Enclosure
Author: Shawn Knight
Editor: Rutledge Feman
Date: 07-18-2008
Provided by: SilverStone
Pages:
Installation / Usage / Conclusion

There are two ways that you can use the RFID enclosure. First, if you already have data on your 2.5" SATA HDD, you can simply install it into the enclosure and have it function as any other enclosure would. But, if you want to use the RFID encryption (after all, that is the whole purpose of this device), you must start with a fresh, unpartitioned drive. Below is a quick video I made, showing how to set up the encryption and also, how to unlock the drive during normal usage.




Once you have the RFID encryption set up, you need to go into Disk Management (right click My Computer, Manage, Storage, Disk Management), at which time you will be prompted to initialize the disk. Then, you will need to set up a partition and format the drive. After this, the drive is ready to use with RFID security.


Since this is a USB 2.0 enclosure, benchmark results were right on par with what was expected. CPU usage was a little higher than with other enclosures I have tested, but I suspect maybe that has to do with the encryption - a small price to pay for the added peace of mind RFID encryption brings to the table.

So, is there any way to extract data from the encrypted drive without the sensor keys? Not easily. If you remove the drive from the enclosure and directly connect it to a computer, you cannot access data on it. The only option you will have is to format the drive and thus, all of the data would be destroyed. Also, you need to take extra precautions and not lose both of the sensor keys. If you do, SilverStone cannot replace them, as they are specific to each enclosure and again, your data will not be accessible. If you happen to lose one key, I would be sure to make frequent backups of the data onto another drive, so if you do lose the other key, you still have your data. Of course, there is "always" a way around everything, but it might take some pretty good knowledge of RFID to be able to bypass the system.

Usage, Findings and Conclusion

SilverStone has taken the basic USB 2.0 hard drive enclosure and added a key feature: security. With all of the data breaches we keep hearing about in the news on a weekly basis, it is comforting to know that you can carry around sensitive material without having to worry about compromising that data should your drive become lost or stolen.

The Treasure Series enclosure comes with everything you need to get up and running, sans hard drive. The supplied carrying pouch is solid and does a nice job of protecting the enclosure from scratches and other damage during transport. Two sensor keys are provided with key rings, so you can easily attach them to your key chain.

Setting up a fresh hard drive with encryption, as shown in the video above, is really easy. The enclosure supports up to five different hard drives, so you can swap out drives as you see fit, all with encryption. Or, if you don't want to format your drive right away, you can still use the enclosure (sans encryption) as you would any other.

As of writing, the SilverStone Treasure Series 2.5" SATA RFID HDD Enclosure sells for $45.99 at a popular online reseller. This is a bit more than most enclosures, but given the fact it uses RFID security, it is well worth the asking price.

OCIA.net has awarded the SilverStone Treasure Series 2.5" SATA RFID HDD Enclosure our Seal of Approval.




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