Seagate Partners With Fornetix To Secure Government Drives

Encryption is easy. Making sure encrypted devices spill their secrets only to the right people, on the other hand, can be like juggling a bunch of eggs. That's why Seagate partnered with the Fornetix security company--to help government agencies keep their eggs in the air instead of on their faces.

Government organizations are obligated to secure their data. This requires them to use storage devices, for example, that meet certain standards. Seagate offers drives that meet those Federal Information Processing Standard Publication 140-2 regulations (FIPS PUB140-2) via its Seagate Government Solutions business. Now the company has teamed up with Fornetix, which makes encryption key management tools, to make those drives easier to use.

Fornetix's tools allow companies to change an encryption key, make sure employees only have access to the right information, and more. (It's kind of like swapping out a thin-shelled egg or making sure nobody's able to crack open an egg they aren't supposed to.) Seagate Government Solutions drives will now have those tools built in, which should reduce the stress of having to manage countless drives used by many different people.

Here's how Seagate and Fornetix bottom-lined it in their announcement:

The integrated Seagate and Fornetix products are also part of the Multilevel Security (MLS) Ecosystem, a joint effort in collaboration with multiple organizations to address data security requirements for the federal government. The products comply with the MLS Ecosystem’s framework of integrated, automated technology that enables secure workflow for government customers, eliminating costly data stovepipes while accommodating various levels of security clearance from a single storage platform.

The move is part of Seagate's continued efforts to capitalize on the business and government markets instead of relying on consumers. Nobody wants to manage a bunch of encryption keys or keep track of who's able to view the contents of a specific drive. Removing some of the hassle from doing so could help Seagate Government Solutions drives compete with products that don't have Fornetix's encryption key management tools built in.

Seagate and Fornetix are showing off their work together at the RSA Conference, which runs February 13-17, at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. (They're at Fornetix booth #S2743, for anyone struggling to navigate the conference halls.) Seagate didn't name any specific products that have been updated with Fornetix's software, nor did the company say how this partnership might affect the price of its government-ready drives.

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