SanDisk yesterday introduced two USB flash drives, Cruzer Professional and Cruzer Enterprise. SanDisk said the new Cruzer drives let businesses of all sizes securely share, retain and safeguard corporate data. At 2.5in long, both SanDisk USB flash drives are password protected and feature 256bit encryption.

The devices can plug into PCs running Microsoft Windows 2000, XP, Vista or Windows Server 2003 and provide read speeds of 24MBps (megabytes per second) and write speeds of 20MBps, according to SanDisk.

Cruzer Professional is designed for SMBs (small-to-medium businesses) and individuals interested in protecting information in presentations, files, documents and videos.

The low-end USB flash drive enables end users to construct a password-protected "privacy zone" that can occupy any amount of its total capacity, said SanDisk. Areas outside the protected zone can be freely accessed by anyone, the company said.

Cruzer Enterprise is built for organisations with tougher security policies, as well as regulatory compliance and privacy concerns, SanDisk said. The high-end drive provides mandatory password-protection for all stored data - preventing the theft or accessing of files in stolen or lost systems. The Cruzer Enterprise features a setup process to design and implement complex passwords and does not require implementation of drivers.

SanDisk also introduced the Cruzer Enterprise Central Management & Control server software as an add-on to the high-end flash drive. CMC provides password recovery and renewal via the network, central data backup and restore, remote termination of any lost drives, and centralised tracking and auditing, said SanDisk.

Cruzer Professional is available in the US in a 1GB implementation for $54.99; a 2GB version lists for $94.99, and a 4GB version costs $144.99.

A 1GB version of Cruzer Enterprise is priced at $74.99; 2GB is $124.99, and 4GB is $184.99.

A SanDisk spokesman declined to disclose pricing for the CMC add-on tool. UK pricing was not available at the time of writing.

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