Over the last few years USB keys have completely taken over the electronic storage world. They are are very convenient, portable and easy to carry around with oneself. Some of us like to keep our sensitive data stored on them and therefore we want the data on a USB key to be secured. The Kashu Systems of Japan have come up with a solution – USB Flash Security. The USB Flash Security is a software to password protect USB keys and protect data stored on them. A password is necessary to access the protected data on the USB key. The data is encrypted using the industry strength AES 256-bit cipher. The USB key is automatically password locked as soon as you pull it out of the USB port.
You can download the Kashu USB Flash Security from http://kashu-sd.co.jp/en/products/usbenter.html. The software is offered free of cost for personal use. If you want to use for commercial purpose then you need to buy licenses. To use the software you need to install it on your Windows based computer.
To install the USB Flash Security in your USB key, insert the USB key in your computer and then run the USB Flash Security from the Start Menu shortcut. All USB keys would be shown with different tabs. Select the tab with your USB key and click the Install button. Make sure you do not have any data on the target USB drive as it will be deleted when you install the USB Flash Security on it.
You will be asked to confirm the installation with a warning that all the data already exisiting on the target USB drive will be deleted when you install the USB Flash Security software. Click OK to confirm and proceed with the installation.
Next enter a password you would use for password protecting the data on USB, choose a password hint which is useful in case you forget the password. You can also choose whether to encrypt the data or not. The encryption cipher is very strong AES 256 bit and it is recommended that your choose to encrypt the data.
After the installation is over you would see only two files on the protected USB drive – autorun.inf and usbenter.exe – indicating that your USB drive is protected. Now when you insert this USB key you should see a password entry dialog. If you do not see this dialog (because autorun.inf is blocked), just open the USB drive in Explorer and double-click on usbenter.exe.
As soon as you enter the correct password, the contents of the USB key change and you can see the actual folders and files stored in it. After unlocking the USB key, you can use it normally – copy files, delete files as you would normally. All the data copied is automatically encypted with AES 256 bit cipher. To lock the USB key again, just pull the USB flash drive out from your computer and it is secured again.
There are USB keys which provide password protection at the hardware level, but they are very costly. The USB Flash Security is the indeed the software solution that everyone was looking for. It is capable of turning any ordinary USB key into a secure password protected USB key.