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SAN FRANCISCO—SanDisk introduced Feb. 5 a new integrated suite of applications that a company spokesperson claims “transforms off-the-shelf USB flash drives from a security threat to a competitive advantage.”

TrustWatch was introduced at the RSA Conference 2007, which opened Feb. 5 at Moscone Center and continues through the week.

TrustWatch is built around a secure network appliance and a management console, through which IT administrators can configure and deploy secured USB flash drives while preventing information from being copied to unapproved devices, a company spokesperson said.

UFDs centrally managed by the TrustWatch suite can store work-related information and support remote access to e-mail and other applications. On the road, employees can use a TrustWatch device on a borrowed PC without leaving any trace of their activity on that PC. If the UFDs are lost or stolen, their data can be remotely destroyed, the spokesperson said.

SanDisk is also offering mTrust, a proven solution which became part of the company’s product portfolio in November with the acquisition of M-systems mTrust provides an enhanced level of security with 256-bit AES hardware-based encryption, enabling two-factor authentication on custom UFDs and mToken smart card-based products supplied by SanDisk.

“Enterprise IT managers have always been concerned about UFDs as enablers of information leakage, whether by accident or malicious intent,” said Marc Metis, vice president, corporate marketing, at SanDisk.

“TrustWatch and mTrust together change the rules. UFDs managed by TrustWatch or mTrust are secure, inside or outside the enterprise network, so knowledge workers can safely take their work anywhere.”

In addition to data encryption, stealth Web browsing and Microsoft Outlook file synchronization, the TrustWatch solution’s many functions include RSA SecurID dual-factor authentication technology from RSA, The Security Division of EMC, which enables the UFDs to be used as authenticators.

In this two-factor authentication system, users must have something they know—a password—and something they possess—the UFD itself—to access data and applications stored within the corporate network.

TrustWatch was co-developed with RedCannon Security, a provider of centrally managed, secure mobile-access solutions for the enterprise.

“RedCannon’s goal is to transform UFDs into enterprise-managed and compliant devices,” said Vimal Vaidya, founder, chairman and CEO of RedCannon Security.

“As the need for remote access to enterprise information grows, TrustWatch is uniquely positioned to provide an economical solution to increase security and improve productivity anytime, anywhere.”

Two other partners contributed to the TrustWatch suite: SecureWave and Safend Ltd., who are both providing endpoint information leakage protection, the spokesperson said.

Click here to read more about SanDisk and Philips’ effort to build stronger security capabilities for ticketing and mobile payment applications.

TrustWatch also includes a special enterprise version of SanDisk’s CruzerSync technology, developed in partnership with Dmailer, for secure synchronization and backup of documents, browser favorites, computer settings such as desktop customization, e-mail, contacts, notes and task lists from a personal computer to managed USB devices.

Unlike the personal version of CruzerSync, the enterprise version can be centrally managed to allow or block specific functionality as well as synchronization of designated files, the spokesperson said.

The TrustWatch suite has three components that together establish life-cycle management for UFDs:

  • TrustWatch Access: Provides security on the UFD, including password protection. Integrates a secure browser, e-mail client, spyware scanner, Citrix ICA Web client, optional VPN client, and data storage. Also creates an activity log tracking all data moving to and from approved UFDs.
  • TrustWatch Vault: Establishes FIPS 140-2 certified encryption on the UFD, sufficient for HIPPA, SOX and other compliance regulations.

  • TrustWatch Manager: Offers a browser-based centralized console to IT administrators, allowing them to remotely deploy, update, track and disable thousands of UFDs.

TrustWatch also works with many endpoint protection solutions, enabling management of USB ports to lock out unauthorized devices from the enterprise network.

The software integrates with existing corporate directories and authentication and can be deployed rapidly. It has only one piece of hardware to install—a rack-mountable Linux-based network appliance, provided by SanDisk.

TrustWatch is supported by SanDisk’s TrustedFlash secure storage and TrustedSignins one time password technologies.

Every SanDisk UFD has an electronic VID/PID-Vendor Identifier/Product Identifier—along with a unique readable electronic serial number, device certificate, and an unknown random encryption key.

The VID/PID and serial number ensures every device is known for what it is and to whom it is assigned. Devices can be managed individually, though group policies or a combination.

Pricing and availability

TrustWatch and mTrust are both available now, with pricing information provided on request to enterprise clients. More information can be found here.

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