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One of the biggest worries when carrying data about is loss. Sure, it sucks being down a storage device when you've left it on the train or had it stolen off you, but what sucks more is realizing that you didn't encrypt something important, and now that data is potentially out in the wild.
You might choose to mitigate this by using a software solution, but in my experience people forget to use this at the most inopportune times. Far better to use a hardware encryption solution that forces the user to encrypt the data at all times.
This is where the IronKey comes into play. Not only does it offer AES 256-bit hardware encryption, but it is built to resist very determined and sophisticated attack. The device will permanently self-destruct after 10 consecutive incorrect password attempts, and a ruggedized, waterproof metal chassis resists physical break-ins and is tamper evident.
Price: The S250 starts at $110 for 2GB.
(Source: Western Digital)
Western Digital My Passport Pro
For a few years now I've been a fan of Western Digital My Passport drives. They're small, fast, and reliable. Given my happy past experiences with these external drives, I was excited when Western Digital sent me a pair of 2TB My Passport Pro.
Unlike the My Passport drives which house a single drive, the My Passport Pro houses two drives. This makes them thicker, but the two drives have benefits. Using the supplied software you can configure these drives as RAID 0 or RAID 1 (depending on whether you want speed or data duplication) or you can set them to appear as separate drives.
The My Passport Pro comes equipped with Thunderbolt connectivity, and the cable is attached, which is great because it means I don't have to buy one, and won't lose the one supplied! This drive delivers transfer rates as high as 233 MB/s, so it's no slouch. The drive also gets power from the Thunderbolt connector so there's no separate AC adaptor to carry (or lose).
Price: Starts at $299 for 2TB.
When you want bags of storage and a higher level of piece of mind than a single drive offers, it is time to employ the services of a bigger tool.
The Drobo Mini fits in nicely between a single external hard drive and a full-on multi-bay NAS box. Because it takes four 2.5-inch drive – as opposed to full-sized 3.5-inch drives – the Drobo Mini has a much smaller footprint than you might expect, and can connect to a PC or Mac using Thunderbolt or USB 3.0.
As well as the four drive, you can speed up a Drobo Mini by adding a separate mSATA solid state drive.
A handy – and portable – solution to the problem of ever-expanding data.
Price: Around $350 for a diskless unit.