When we last heard from the LaCie SAFE drive
, it had one major flaw: while access to the drive required a fingerprint scan, the data actually on the drive was not encrypted. That meant that anyone with a screwdriver and access to the drive could simply take the drive out of its enclosure, access all the data and return it -- thus defeating the major "feature" of this "safe" drive. Today, LaCie
announced a new version of its SAFE drive, coming in both desktop and mobile flavors. The desktop version, which retails for $150 - $300, supports USB 2.0, comes in 160, 320 and 500 GB sizes at spins at 7,200rpm. The mobile version (no power supply needed) comes in 40, 80 (both 5,400rpm) and 120GB (4,200rpm) sizes ($100 - $280) and optionally has encryption on the two upper mobile drives ($220 for 80GB and $300 for 120GB). The LaCie SAFE has two additional layers of security: a secure chain lock port (chain sold separately -- damn you LaCie!) to physically attach the drive to your desk, and "drive lock" firmware that will apparently prevent data from being accessed when plugged into another computer -- a clear response to its previous flaws. But if this drive is anything like LaCie's last one, please do wait until you see a review or two floating around before investing your hard-earned dough in it.