Encryption, storage technology and security of data at rest
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Citation:Alkorbi, M. (2015). Encryption, storage technology and security of data at rest. An unpublished thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Computing, at Unitec Institute of Technology.
Permanent link to Research Bank record:http://hdl.handle.net/10652/3234
The term cryptography is defined as the encryption of sensitive information such as, data, image and others. The cryptographic techniques have changed over the years based on the developments of encryption software and encryption algorithms. Sensitive data needs to be protected from being stolen and read by unauthorized persons regardless of whether this data is stored in hard drives, flash memory, laptops, desktops and or other storage devices. The data can be processed, transferred, and stored. In order to secure data in storage devices, this research will evaluate the encryption performance of six different storage devices. The six different storage devices in this research are Hard Disk Drive (HDD), Solid State Hybrid Drive (SSHD, Solid State Disk based NAND Single-Level-Cell (SSD SLC) flash memory, Solid State Disk based NAND Multi-Level-Cell flash memory (SSD MLC), Solid State Disk based NAND Triple-Level- Cell flash memory (SSD TLC), and Solid State Disk based NAND Multi-Level-Cell flash memory (SSD MLC) (PCIe interface 3.0 x4). The first experiment will evaluate the performance of HDD, SSHD, and SSD based NAND MLC flash memory before and after applying encryption algorithm to the storage device to determine which one performs the best. These storage devices operate differently. HDD stores the data on a magnetic disk (old technology) and SSD stores the data on a flash memory. SSHD is an integrated technology that combines NAND flash SSD and HDD technology (old technology). The purpose of NAND flash SSD on the hybrid drive is to act as a cache for the data stored on the HDD. The second experiment aims to evaluate the performance of different SSD based flash memory before and after applying encryption to the storage device. It will include a detailed comparison of the performance of the encryption on SSD based NAND SLC, MLC, and TLC flash memory (SATA interface type). The comparative results will be analysed to determine the SSD device with the highest performance. The third experiment will take the best SSD performer in the second experiment and compare it with SSD based NAND MLC flash (PCIe interface type). SSD based NAND SLC, MLC and TLC flash (SATA interface) are current technology whereas SSD based NAND MLC (PCIe interface) is emerging technology. The research will produce a comparative performance analysis of both SSD interface types to determine which type of SSD interface performs the best. The last experiment aims to compare the performance of different encryption algorithms including AES, Serpent, and Twofish 256 bits on the six different storage devices using BestCrypt (commercial storage encryption software) and TrueCrypt (Open source storage encryption software). The last experiment will determine what kind of encryption algorithm performs the best on each storage device. Additionally, it will determine what kind of storage encryption software has the highest level of encryption performance. The features examined to measure performance in this research are read and write speed across different disk access patterns and read and write speed across different disk access patterns at different temperatures. Storage device manufacturers utilize these measurement features to categorize their storage devices.