AES 256-bit encryption on Fujitsu hard drives

By encrypting at the hardware level, in the BIOS, the keys are not present on the hard drive itself.

Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Inc.

On Monday, Fujitsu Computer Products of America announced the Fujitsu MHZ2 CJ series for business notebooks that features full disk encryption. The new 2.5" 7,200RPM SATA hard disk drive (HDD) incorporates the AES-256 encryption standard at the hardware level without the need for additional software.

Unlike encryption with Windows Vista BitLocker, which requires the operating system to be present, the new Fujitsu drive performs its encryption entirely within the BIOS during power on. Encryption performed within the BIOS prevents the keys from being stored in the clear anywhere on the drive.

According to Fujitsu, "the key used to encrypt and decrypt data is cryptographically regenerated at power-on, and is not known even to the HDD when the system is powered off."

Also, since all the encryption generation is done as the laptop is being powered up, there is virtually no performance hit whenever the 256-bit password key is generated.

Fujitsu plans to ship the MHZ2 CJ series starting this summer.

About the author

    As CNET's former resident security expert, Robert Vamosi has been interviewed on the BBC, CNN, MSNBC, and other outlets to share his knowledge about the latest online threats and to offer advice on personal and corporate security.


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