Researchers from Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands yesterday disclosed a pair of vulnerabilities in the hardware full-disk encryption mechanisms of self-encrypting solid state drives (SSDs) from Samsung and Crucial. The flaws are present in both internal and external storage devices from these manufacturers, and even affect Microsoft Windows environments that use BitLocker for full-disk encryption.

According to a report released by university researchers, the self-encrypting drives lack certain key defenses normally found in software full-disk encryption, including protections against physical attacks and malware-based data exfiltration. Consequently, attackers can exploit such deficiencies in order to bypass credentials-based protections and access the data inside the SSDs.

Samsung and Crucial were reportedly notified of these issues six months ago. "The results are being made public today so that users of the affected SSDs can protect their data properly," said researcher Bernard van Gastel, in a Radboud press release.

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