Last October I told you about the ioSafe SoloPRO fireproof external hard drive. It's one of the best options for protecting your data from physical harm. However, since the drive weighs 18 pounds, it's not ideal for those who need portability. That's where the ioSafe Rugged Portable comes in. Weighing little more than one pound, it's considerably lighter and smaller. And although it's not fireproof like the SoloPRO, it is almost everything-else-proof.
The ioSafe Rugged Portable comes in two connection flavors, USB 3.0 or a USB 2.0/Dual Firewire 800 combo with options for a 500 GB or 1 TB 5400 RPM hard drive. As you can see from the image above, the drive looks pretty slick, made from a single billet-machined aluminum enclosure. However, what sets this drive apart from almost any other is that its bullet proof. You can literally take a shotgun to it without harming the drive and, more importantly, your data. I don't own a gun, so I didn't test out the bullet resistance, but The Wall Street Journal did in this entertaining video. However, I did test out some of its other protections (including water and drop protection) and the drive worked perfectly afterwords.
Besides being bullet proof, the ioSafe Rugged Portable is also crush proof up to 5000 lbs; water proof for up to 3 days in 30 feet of water; UV ray, blowing sand, blowing dust, rain, salt fog, icing rain, and freezing rain proof for up to a continuous 24 hours; drop proof up to 10 feet; and chemical proof from diesel fuel, oils, hydraulic fluids and aircraft fuels for up to an hour at 12 feet. The drive also features a built-in Kensington security slot and "any reason" data recovery, even if the data loss was your fault.
Thanks to its superior data protection capabilities, it's no wonder the ioSafe Rugged Portable is used by huge companies and the US Navy. But because of the specialty nature of the drive, you will pay a premium to own one. The 1 TB model I tested is US$299.99 with 12 months warranty/data recovery service, while a 500 GB model is $199.99. Currently the ioSafe Rugged Portable isn't sold in Apple retail stores, but you can pick it up at Apple's Online Store, on Amazon, or from ioSafe directly.