Encrypting sensitive data is a must; new key management tools make it easy

SafeNet, WinMagic, Symantec deliver basic key management, plus a whole lot more

Encryption is one of the best ways to prevent the type of terrible headaches that many high-profile companies have experienced with stolen data. Even if experienced hackers are able to penetrate a system, having the data encrypted can mean that nothing useful is taken.

But encryption can place a high burden on a network and its users. It's not too difficult to encrypt data, but providing access to protected files for authorized users while keeping everyone else away is extremely complicated. Small organizations may be able to manage encryption schemes manually, but for anything beyond a few dozen users, the task of doing that without help becomes monumentally difficult.

Enter key management systems. We tested three: SafeNet KeySecure, WinMagic's SecureDoc Enterprise Server and Symantec Encryption Management Server.

SafeNet Key Secure comes as an appliance or in virtualized form, running in the cloud. Key Secure is designed to manage other vendors’ encryption products, so it’s a good bet if your company already has one or more encryption products already deployed. It can manage keys for drives, tape backup devices, SANs, client systems, and virtual applications.

+ ALSO ON NETWORK WORLD Universal key management for the cloud +

WinMagic’s SecureDoc Enterprise Server is a good option if you’re interested in encrypting data on mobile devices. SecureDoc also goes beyond managing encryption keys; its management console allows you to set up security policies such as password authentication for Android and iOS devices.

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