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I'm looking for a secure USB flash drive that has built-in 256-bit (or greater) encryption.

Requirements:

  • At least 16GB
  • USB 3.0
  • Completely encrypted without third-party software.
  • Having either actual buttons on the flash drive (for a pin), or having to type in a password when plugged into a computer is fine
  • Works on both Windows (Vista, 7, 8.1, 10) and on GNU/Linux
  • Able to change/customize password or pin
  • Cheaper it is, the better, but no actual limit for the price
  • Unable to delete files/format without the password/pin
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Kingston has a few excellent encrypted flash drive solutions. Their flash drives are always high-quality and are known for their reliability.

Kingston DataTraveler Vault Privacy 3.0
Their basic encrypted flash drive. (~$60 for 16GB)

  • encryption certified by FIPS 197 standard
  • optional antivirus (I can't attest to the usefulness of this)

Kingston DataTraveler 4000 G2
Their advanced encrypted flash drive. (~$70 for 16GB)

  • encryption certified by FIPS 140-2 Level 3, a higher standard than FIPS 197
  • waterproof and titanium-coated stainless steel
  • allows bulk-order customization (logo, encryption and password settings, etc.) for businesses
  • a seal that shows signs of tampering if the encryption module is messed with

Features of both models

  • 4GB to 64GB
  • USB 3.0 and 2.0 connectivity
  • built-in 256-bit XTS encryption
  • works with Vista/7/8.1/10, OSX, and Linux
  • optional read-only access mode
  • lockdown/formatting protocol for attempted break-ins
  • password-protected access and optional "dual password" to reset via the OS

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