RunCore Unveils Self-Destructing SSDs

By Pedro Hernandez

In IT, having your wares blow up is usually not a good way to win customers. One Chinese solid-state drive (SSD) maker is bucking conventional wisdom by offering SSDs where self-destruction is a feature, not a bug.

RunCore is showing off an internal SATA 2 SSD called InVincible with a couple of unique ways of making data irretrievable during presumably high stakes situations. As such, the devices are being targeted at defense companies and high security organizations, not run-of-the mill techies.

In a YouTube video released by the company, viewers will notice that the drive's SATA cable is outfitted with extra wires. Two buttons, one red and one green, hang off these wires and they each take dramatically different measures to ensure that sensitive data stays out of the wrong hands.

Pressing the green button invokes the SSD's "intelligent destruction" function. This essentially wipes the drive via software, making it appear as an uninitialized drive. Although the data is lost, the drive can be reused.

Worried about the drive being subjected to sophisticated data recovery techniques? Then it's time to press the self-destruct button.

The red button triggers InVincible's "physical destruction" feature, which sends a large current coursing through the drive's electronics, effectively frying them. Outwardly, the SSD releases a reassuring puff of smoke.

Prying open the unit reveals charred, warped and cracked flash chips that are beyond repair. Better yet, they are unable to spill the secrets they once held.

InVincible will be available in 1.8-inch and 2.5-inch versions. The SSD is rated at 240 MB per second reads and 140 MB per second writes. Capacities range from 8 GB to 256 GB for the 1.8-inch model and 16 GB to 512 GB for the 2.5-inch drive.

MLC and SLC variants are planned, according to the company. Pricing details have not been disclosed.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

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This article was originally published on May 18, 2012