Security firm IronKey has announced that its Enterprise S200 package of USB flash drives and management software is undergoing certification for government use by the CESG, the UK national technical authority for information assurance.
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If approved, it will allow UK government departments to include USB portable storage media in business plans that will comply with data protection laws.
The AES 256-bit hardware-encrypted USB flash drives and management software are being evaluated under the CESG Assisted Products Service (CAPS).
The software is designed to enable organisations to administer policies across thousands of devices over the internet as well as wipe or disable them remotely.
The CAPS program certifies that products and services meet government cryptographic and other data protection standards.
Government departments are coming under increasing pressure to protect data on portable storage devices, said Kevin Bocek, director of product marketing at IronKey.
The Information Commissioner's Office has highlighted the poor data protection record of government organisations and is now able to impose fines of up to £500,000 for serious breaches, he said.
According to Bocek, the CAPS certification will give government departments the tools they need to enable employees to work securely from any location.
"The certification is also relevant to non-governmental departments and suppliers. as the same technology is used in the commercial product," he said.
IronKey is confident of winning CAPS certification for the S200, which has been validated to FIPS 140-2 Level 3 security standards by the US National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST).
The IronKey Enterprise S200 hardware and software package was launched to the commercial enterprise market in July 2009.
CAPS certified editions configured to run in government-approved modes will be available in the next nine to 12 months, said Bocek.