Study examining the usage of hardware-based encrypting drives

The Trusted Computing Group (TCG) and Ponemon Institute released a full report on the perceptions about self-encrypting drives.

The study interviewed 517 IT practitioners in financial services, the public sector, retailing, healthcare, technology and other fields who were familiar with self-encrypting drives (SEDs).

Respondents believed that hardware-based encryption, including self-encrypting drives, is more secure than software alternatives. Fifty-three percent of respondents noted that lower costs were important features for self-encrypting drives.

The survey also revealed that 41 percent currently use a combination of hardware and software encryption. Those using hardware encryption believed it did not impact user productivity, nor was it more difficult to implement.

The report notes that more than half of the respondents encrypt data to comply with state or federal data protection laws, with almost half using it to satisfy internal compliance requirements.

IT users in the study also said that performance and ease of deployment were the most important features for encryption. Faster setup time, enhanced scalability of SEDs and improved system performance due to offloading encryption from the host processor to the drive were noted as benefits of SEDs compared to software encryption.

The complete report is available here.

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