A new kind of drive is soon to be on the market, and it’s straight out of the movies: London based company Secure Drives will help us get in touch with our inner secret agent via the Autothysis128, a hard drive with a self-destruct function. Now, don’t get too excited – it doesn’t explode – however, by sending a text message the owner can completely scramble all of the data on the drive beyond recovery.
The company will be putting out three varieties of the Authothysis drive, and all are equally pricey: the basic Autothysis DSP will run around $1,500; the mid grade version, Autothysis128s, is $1,560; and the top-of-the-line Autothysis128t will ship at $1,663. The kick is that all three drives offer only 128GB of storage – compare that to a Seagate 4TB drive, which is $299, and you might feel that the price Secure Drives is asking for might be a little flagrant; apparently being a secret agent is an expensive endeavor.
The drives work their self destructive magic through built-in GSM cellular technology, which allows them to receive text messages. Multiple phones can be connected to a single drive, and multiple drives to a single phone. Disconnecting a phone from a drive requires a PIN, and entering the PIN incorrectly one too many times will wipe the drives; once the process begins, the data is fragmented beyond any recovery. Automatic wipes also occur when the drive is forcibly removed from the PC and when the battery falls below a certain level. For an extra $180, a special token can be purchased which adds another layer of identity protection. The final upgrade is a master kill switch, the price of which has yet to be revealed, that can wipe up to fifty drives all at once. In order for any of this work, the owner will be paying $47 a year to stay connected to the Secure Drives network.
So the question is: are these drives worth the excessive price tag? Judging by the fact that most people don’t have top secret government data on their computer, Autothysis128 isn’t going to be the most popular drive; but for those who do have sensitive data that needs the top levels of protection, Secure Drives is estimating a second quarter of 2014 release date.