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'This message will self-destruct' becomes a reality thanks to PARC

Mission Impossible becomes real life: Self-destructing data is here, thanks to Xerox's PARC
By: Chris Smith | Storage News | Posted: Sep 12, 2015 8:31 am

Designed and made by researchers at Xerox's PARC, this self-destructing flash drive is something of a movie prop come to life but without the fiery explosions. Made for those carrying secretive data, this product can destruct on command, shattering the chip within and making it unreadable.




Utilizing Corning's Gorilla Glass, this product is made by stressing the original material in order to form tempered glass. Glass is the 'secret ingredient' here, ensuring that the product will shatter effectively and without fail. As explained by PARC senior scientist Gregory Whiting, this method ensures that "you get is glass that, because it's heavily stressed, breaks it fragments into tiny little pieces."


A resistor located at the base of the chip is used to perform the destruction. A laser is used to heat up this resistor, eventually shattering the glass above due to the magical powers of science. This technique ensures that not only does the chip break up into fragments, but all that's left is the dust of your previously-sensitive data.




For a further look into how it works, check the image below of the destruction in motion.




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