28 July 2015

REVIEW: datAshur SSD Flash Drive

Assuring your data.

As people constantly on the move, we're always concerned about how to safely carry around important digital files, conscious of what might happen should we lose them and they fall into the wrongs hands. Granted, our important data is a spreadsheet of Brian Blessed quotes and bunch of fan art from Community, but still... wouldn't want a Russian spy nabbing them, would we? If your data is a little bit more important, then perhaps you need a flash drive that not just anyone can get access to. You need the datAshur SSD Flash Drive.

This is our third look at a flash drive from encryption experts iStorage, and each time previously we've been very impressed. The datAshur SSD Flash Drive is similar in appearance to the datAshur Secure flash drive, which was one of the first gadgets we ever reviewed a few years back. Basically  you have a USB flash drive that requires a keycode to access the data onboard. Get the code wrong a few times, and the drive automatically wipes itself clean.

So if you carry around extremely important information on a flash drive, be it customer information or the top secret plans to a weapon that can evaporate the oceans in the blink of an eye, only you can access it by entering the correct code. So pretty much the same as before. So what's the difference? By God, it is capacity.

We were previously wowed by the 8GB version of the datAshur, but as the addition of 'SSD' suggests, things have improved. The iStorage datAshur SSD Flash Drive comes in 30, 60, 120 or 240 gigabyte versions! We were massively impressed by this, not just because you can, therefore, keep safe an entire computer's worth of data protected while on the go, but because the package it all comes in is so small, light, and slim (not to mention water and dust resistant thanks to the aluminium sleeve).

It works with any USB device, not just Macs and PCs, and doesn't require a software driver to be on the device first. Nor do you have to wait to plug it in before you can enter your eight digit code, as the datAshur SSD Flash Drive has its own battery. You simply enter your code, and then you have a limited amount of time to plug it into a USB port before the drive locks once more, requiring you to enter you code again. It will also automatically lock once the drive is pulled from the port (or after a pre-set amount of time) meaning that even if some cheeky tea-leaf were to snatch your flash drive straight from the computer, they still wouldn't be able to get to the data without the code. Nice try, Russia.

But the really remarkable thing about the datAshur SSD Flash Drive is the choice of huge capacities. Obviously you'll be paying top whack for the device, even at the lower end of sizes, but for businesses whose workers need to carry sensitive materials around with them, protecting the data on one of these could save a lot of bother (and money) should it ever get lost.

30GB £159
60GB £199
120GB £229
240GB £299

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