---- Encrypting Your Laptop HD May Not Protect Your Data
engine - 5:31 pm on Feb 22, 2008 (gmt 0)
If you think that encrypting your laptop's hard drive will keep your data safe from prying eyes, you may want to think again, according to researchers at Princeton University.
They'vediscovereda way to steal the hard drive encryption key used by products such as Windows Vista's BitLocker or Apple's FileVault. With that key, hackers could get access to all of the data stored on an encrypted hard drive.
That's because of a physical property of the computer's memory chips. Data in these DRAM (dynamic RAM) processors disappears when the computer is turned off, but it turns out that this doesn't happen right away, according to Alex Halderman, a Princeton graduate student who worked on the paper.