Enterprise-WideStorage Security withnwStor iSav Appliances


1. Executive Summary

2. Need for Data Security

3. Solution:

4. Conclusion


The advantages of networked data storage technologies such as Network Attached Storage (NAS) are well established, but toring an organization’s data on a network creates significant security risks.

Technologies like NAS and backup tapes that aggregate data for storage can improve scalability, manageability and access to critical data, while substantially reducing the total cost of storage. Additionally, storage networks can simplify the process for enterprises seeking to implement comprehensive disaster recovery programs.However, data in networked storage environments is significantly more vulnerable to unauthorized access, theft or misuse than data stored in more traditional, direct-attached storage.

Aggregated storage is not designed to compartmentalize the data it contains, and data from different departments or divisions becomes co-mingled. Data replication, backup, off-site mirroring, and other disaster recovery techniques increase the risk of unauthorized access from people both inside andoutside the enterprise. Partner access through firewalls and other legitimate business needs also create undesirable security risks. With storage networks, a single security breach can threaten the data assets of an entire organization.

Technologies such as firewalls, Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), and Virtual Private Networks (VPN) seek to secure data assets by protecting the perimeter of the network. While important in their own right, these targeted approaches do not adequately secure storage. Consequently, they leave data at the core dangerously open to both internal and external attacks Once these barriers are breached — via stolen passwords, uncaught viruses, or simple misconfiguration — data assets are fully exposed.


Corporate information is one of the most valuable assets for an enterprise. Proper security measures are needed to prevent unauthorized access and misuse of these data, and often time required for regulatory compliance.

nwStor’s Encryption appliance is a data encryption and control solution – offering comprehensive security to organizations of all sizes offering protection capabilities both for local and remote sites with unprecedented efficiency and cost effectiveness


nwStor empowers you to secure your data across your organization without compromising ongoing operations. iSav storage security appliance combines storage encryption, file access control, user authentication, and secure logging to provide protection for your sensitive data on your storage devices including cloud storage.

Your company’s sensitive data located in the network file servers and NAS devices will be securely locked up by iSav with the highest industrial encryption standard, AES-256 encryption The data security level is further elevated by assigning a unique encryption key for each file. The data encryption and decryption process will be done by hardware efficiently and transparently,With all encryption keys and data further encrypted and saved in Cloud and key management server, iSav can be recovered anywhere in the world should there be a disaster event at the local site

iSav is hardware based data encryption system. The deployment of iSav is as simple as the installation of a network router. A signal unit can centrally manage and secure all files stored in NAS devices and file servers across the company’s network while allowing authorized users to access data(write, read and delete) as usual. All file encryption and decryption will be handled by iSav transparently as the data are passing through iSav.

iSav can be deployed in the data path between clients or hosts and the storage device, either inline or attached to a switch.

iSav doesn’t store data – it simply accepts data from the client/host, encrypts it using the AES algorithm, and sends it on to storage. When an authorized user or application requests data, iSav authenticates the user or application, retrieves the ata from storage, decrypts it and presents it back — all at wire speed. iSav works within file-based (NAS) networked storage environments. Security of the stored data is ensured while user or application workflow is not changed.

Figure 1 illustrates a simple, high-availability deployment in a file server (NAS) environment.

By encrypting data, and routing all access through secure hardware, iSav makes it easier for organizations to control and track data access. Encryption effectively blocks all back doors to data -protecting sensitive information on disk or tape against theft or misuse. Even if an unauthorized person gains access to the media, all they’ll see are meaningless characters Implemented correctly, encryption is a powerful tool that dramatically simplifies data security.

But all encryption is not created equal. There are a number of capabilities organizations should consider when evaluating encryption technologies:


One of the many advantages of using dedicated hardware for encryption is exceptional performance.

Strong encryption is computationally expensive, and traditional, software-based encryption methods are notoriously slow, as well as cumbersome to implement. In contrast, iSav appliances can be deployed into an existing infrastructure in a matter of hours, without ever taking the data offline. Further, iSav encrypts and decrypts at over 4 gigabits per second, easily keeping up with Gigabit Ethernet storage networks. Using unique functionality, iSav delivers a port to port latency as low as 50-100 microseconds.

iSav can be placed in a broad variety of locations within the network, depending on the desired security and throughput requirements. Because many storage networks do not consistently maximize the 2Gig pipe, it is quite feasible for one iSav to handle many hosts and many storage devices simultaneously.

iSav appliances can be deployed in active-active clusters for availability and failover, and additional appliances can be added to address higher throughput requirements.


iSav was designed to secure data while protecting existing infrastructure investments.

The system integrates seamlessly with databases, mail servers, storage management, backup and other applications layered upon various operating systems in all storage environments.

Because iSav speaks CIFS and NFS Channel natively, no software or agents are required for either the application hosts or clients, making the appliance easy to install and support. iSav also works with existing security technologies like firewalls.authentication schemes, IPS, and VPNs.

Compared with Software solution

Software or database encryption solutions are operating system dependent. They must be integrated into each client or application, and it’s important to consider that security may be compromised when application or operating systems are upgraded. Because iSav speaks the native protocols of the storage environment, it works with all operating systems, applications and versions, providing much greater security, and flexibility.


While performance and easy implementation are important, perhaps the most crucial consideration for the encryption and access control solution is the security of the system itself.

AES 256-bit Encryption Standara

iSav utilizes hardware AES-256 encryption as the encryption standard, which is very strong encryption standard adopted by the U.S. Government for top secret documents protection. iSav has a built-in hardware random number generator(RNG) to ensure that all the keys generated are true random.

Unique Key per File

Each file is encrypted by a unique key to guarantee the highest security. This increases the difficult for any ndividual to break the encrypted stolen files.

Delete Sensitive Data Securely and Permanently

Once an encrypted file is deleted, iSav will erase the corresponding encryption key to ensure the deleted file will be irretrievable.


All encryption keys, configuration data, and metadata are encrypted and backed up to cloud storage, so iSav can be recovered globally in case of disaster.

Before sending data to cloud storage, every file stored in Cloud will be securely protected by very strong encryption standard so that no data center administrator will be able to access your sensitive data.


When encrypting data that may be stored for months or years, secure, effective key management is crucial. Key management has always been a weakness in traditional encryption systems requiring users or administrators to keep track of this important and highly sensitive information. Further, keys were often stored in cleartext on open operating systems, leading to a much higher likelihood of compromise.

iSav changes this legacy with an innovative, layered key management system that removes the complexity commonly associated with encryption, yet ensures that the keys are fully protected and data can be restored, regardless of location.

Data is encrypted at the file level with a File Key, which ensures that even identical documents will result in different ciphertext.

Further, each Cryptainer vault has its own encryption key, so aggregated storage can be cryptographically partitioned. Finally, these keys are wrapped in an additional layer of AES-256 encryption so they can be securely backed up outside iSav.

Figure 2 illustrates the automated archiving of encryption keys into the key server and backup to cloud storage or NAS.


Authentication and Assess Control: Authentication plays a key role in the security provided by iSav, ensuring only authorized users and applications have access to stored data.n/m administrator authentication is to avoid a single security administrator from abusing his/her administrator privilege, iSav has an option of a quorum of n over m administrators to login in order to activate and configure iSav.

User authentication is to authenticate themselves before they can access their data in order to prevent unauthorized access.to data that are not meant for them.

Secure Log Provide Audit Trial: iSav provides secure log for audit trail purposes. It records every event, action, or file access and tracks who, when, what, and how protected data were being accessed. This includes all successful and unsuccessful actions performed by administrators or users. The log cannot be modified or erased

Easy Management System: iSav provides with many useful tools to assist system manager to handle with maintenance task such as remote secure web management interface and email notification.

Cost Effective Centralized Solution: Signal iSav can secure files of multiple file servers and NAS devices, so it is cost effective without being dependent on a particular storage vendor. And it also secures files from different applications centrally.


As organizations seek to save money and improve access to data by implementing aggregated storage technologies such as file servers (NAS) and replicating this data for backup and disaster recovery, they have opened the door to much greater risks. Identity theft is costing companies and government organizations billions of dollars, and new privacy initiatives are mandating greater attention to the security of stored data.

While some common existing security technologies play an important role, they do not adequately meet the needs of storage security. Software-based storage security solutions are slow, limited in scope, and are not fully secure.

nwStor offers a comprehensive solution to the storage security problem, enabling organizations to build defense in depth.|nwStor iSav is a powerful, scalable, network appliance that is designed specifically for the task of securing stored data. iSav enables organizations to reap the full benefits of networked storage, while ensuring that the data remains private and secure.