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Let's look inside the super-secure DataLocker DL3 encrypted external hard drive

What's inside a super-secure encrypted hard drive? Let's get the screwdrivers out and take a look.

Quite a few readers have expressed an interest in seeing what's inside a DataLocker DL3 encrypted hard drive. Well, let's get the screwdrivers out and take a look!

Some readers expect the drive to be filled with cool spinamathings, but I was more restrained and didn't think we'd see much cool stuff.

The DL3 is a palm-sized eternal hard drive, on which the data is encrypted using an AES 256-bit XTS mode crypto engine. Brute-force attacks are impossible thanks to the self-destruct mode, and the alphanumeric, backlit keypad randomly rotates the entries on the keypad to mitigate against attacks that rely on fingerprint or pattern examination.

A great feature of the DL3 is that there are no drivers to install. You just plug it in and away you go. All drive management and admin is also controlled using the touchscreen keypad.

Must read: This app will tell you if your iPhone has been hacked

Let's take a look inside.

Overall, it's a very simple, yet robust design, but as I expected, there's not an awful lot to see inside. There was a part of me expecting to see everything -- or at least the circuit board -- encased in epoxy to prevent tampering, but the manufacturers clearly saw no need to do that.

Datalocker DL3

DataLocker DL3

Key features:

  • Absolutely no software or drivers
  • Supports alpha and numeric based passwords, plus the # and * characters
  • AES 256-bit XTS mode encryption.
  • Self destruct security mode (mitigate brute force hacking)
  • Keypad randomization (mitigate surface analysis)
  • Super-speed USB 3.0 interface (compatible with USB 2.0)
  • Rapid secure wipe (rapid key zeroization)
  • Supports an administrator password (full permissions) and a user password (limited permissions)
  • Removable silicone protective guard