Toshiba is on the brink of launching a range of internal self-encrypting hard drives, that automatically invalidate protected data when connected to an unknown host. That means, if you have your drive stolen, it will completely wipe files if inserted into another computer.

The models, designated Toshiba MKxx61GSYG, are essentially aimed at OEMs, who can configure the drives with different data invalidation options, and set them to only work with that specific machine. They can also set them, in extreme cases, to wipe on command - for example, if the correct security code hasn't been entered by the user.

The latter option is particularly important if a laptop has been stolen, and contains sensitive information.

They can also be configured to simply deny access, so that an engineer can recover the data at a later date, if the hard drive is recovered.

Entering into full production in Q2 (soon then), the Toshiba MKxx61GSYG SED models feature storage capacities from 160GB to 640GB, are Serial ATA compatible and spin at a rate of 7,200 RPM.

It is expected that OEMs will be the first to get their hands on them, for business and consumer PC builds.