Quantum Announces Latest Technology to Protect Against Ransomware


Quantum Corporation recently announced the latest technology to offer protection against cyberattacks like ransomware. Quantum’s Scalar Ransom Block is a part of Quantum’s Scalar tape systems that eliminates the risk of data compromise over the network. The patent-pending solution develops a hardware ‘block’ between data stored on tapes and every network-connected device, including the robotic tape system.

Ransom Block can be started off remotely as it does not require any person to handle tapes, ensuring data is inaccessible over the network even if the tape library gets hacked. It also preserves the capability to audit the tape library, so customers know their data is completely protected.

CEO’s Take

Quantum CEO Jamie Lerner said that the threat of ransomware and other cyberattacks are one of the primary reasons for concern to the customers. Tape storage systems are an essential part of building cyber-resilient infrastructures for both long archives and a part of a comprehensive data protection strategy. Nevertheless, data stored on tapes can be compromised if the tape library itself is hacked. It is the main reason why Quantum designed the new features in collaboration with a large cloud provider.

He further said that the Quantum Scalar Ransom Block is a solution that makes sure the user data is safe and secure with a single click of a button and delivers the ultimate layer of protection for data stored on tape.

Ransom Block Working

Photo Jamie Lerner, chairman and CEO of Quantum
“The threat of ransomware and other forms of cyber-attacks are one of the chief concerns of our customers,” said Jamie Lerner, chairman and CEO of Quantum.

All the tapes stored in a library sit in a magazine. Quantum’s patent-pending design ejects the magazine partially, so the robot cannot select the tapes until an operator physically re-inserts the magazine. This happens because the magazine is only partially ejected. The barcode scanner on the robot can still scan the tape barcodes. It enables the system administrator to perform periodic audits of the tape system to make sure that the tapes are still in place.

Until an operator who has physical access to the tape library re-inserts the magazine, the tapes become inaccessible. In addition, Tape systems can be stored in secure data centers that require badged access. Quantum has also unveiled Logical Tape Blocking, which allows administrators to rely on software commands to stop tapes from being loaded into a drive while the magazine is being filled with tapes before getting ejected. The new feature also reduces the risk window until Ransom Block is initiated.

Comprehensive Security Framework

Logical Tape Blocking and Ransom Block are the latest innovations that are a part of a Quantum’s comprehensive security framework. These features would make the Scalar tape systems to be highly secure storage systems on the market.

  • Multi-factor authentication can be activated for the administrator and user logins, offering an additional layer of security for access control.
  • The scalar active vault allows tapes to be moved into a secure, isolated in-library vault partition with no network connectivity and is also not visible to any application or network.
  • Scalar ransom block and logical tape blocking ensure that the data stored on tape is secure, even in the remote hack.
  • Scalar media security alerts notify the administrator of the library when media is eradicated – either expectedly or unexpectedly.

Ransom Block and Logical Tape Blocking are expected to be available on new Scalar i6 and Scalar i3 tape libraries in December 2021. The remainder of the Quantum Scalar Security Framework’s functionalities are now generally available.