Thursday, August 28, 2008

Web Secret #14 - keeping secrets

Most of us tend to be incredibly sloppy about backing up our most important digital information. Credit card and bank account numbers, even passwords - many of us have this information on one computer - (or little scraps of paper) and nowhere else. The Tâke Personal Pocket Safe from Blackbox Innovations is like a safety deposit box to hold your critical stuff.

The “safe” is a U.S.B. drive with a numeric keypad and encryption. (Nicely old fashioned, it reminds me of the old lock I had on my high school locker.) After you enter your four-digit code, you have 30 seconds to insert the device into a computer before it locks. It also locks if it sits idle in the computer for more than three minutes.

All the necessary software is on the drive, and it can be used on any PC without leaving a trace. The software has forms that can be filled out with important phone numbers, addresses, account data and so forth. The drive is available for $49 at

Better yet, you can register and back up your information on the company’s secure Web site - your info is safe - even if you lose the device. The company also protects the hardware from being hacked. If you try to remove the flash memory chip, it will stop working.

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