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Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes

SuperNASman
Aspirant

Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes

Hello, I have encrypted my NAS using the encryption feature available in ReadyNAS OS 6. But now comes the issue of backing up the NAS and also protecting those backups.

 

If I backup an encrypted NAS to an external hard drive or another NAS, is the backup encrypted as well? Or is an unencrypted version of the volume what gets backed up?

 

If the backup is unencrypted, how do I go about having encrypted backups?

 

I've had trouble unlocking an external hard drive that uses Microsoft BitLocker encryption. After I plug it into the ReadyNAS I don't seem to be able to add it as an iSCSI drive, and even if I actually map the hard drive the option to unlock the BitLocker encrypted drive never shows up.

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StephenB
Guru

Re: Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes


@SuperNASman wrote:

What about when you back up an encrypted NAS drive over USB? This backup is also not encrypted right?


Correct.


@SuperNASman wrote:

It sounds like what you guys are saying is that the only reasonable way to backup an encrypted nas, and keep the backup encrypted as well, is by backing up from one encrypted ReadyNAS to another encrypted ReadyNAS.

 

Is that correct?


 There are some other options.  Some people use cloud backup (for instance CrashPlan).  

 

Or you can attach your bitlocker protected drive to your PC, and back up the NAS to it over the network.  You can do that from the PC (a robocopy script is fairly easy to create, and is incremental), or perhaps install deltacopy on the PC and set up an rsync backup job on the NAS. 

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mdgm-ntgr
NETGEAR Employee Retired

Re: Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes

You could get a second ReadyNAS and encrypt the volume on that as well. Then all you'd need is to have the data transmission encrypted as well e.g. using ReadyNAS Replicate. The USB key only needs to be connected to the NAS until the volume has been mounted. Once the volume is mounted you can disconnect the USB key so when you power on the system no one can mount the volume without your key.

Message 2 of 5
StephenB
Guru

Re: Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes

Encrypting the drive just protects against physical theft of the hard drive (and even then it is only useful if the usb key is not also stolen).  When you access the NAS over the network, the NAS decrypts the hard drive data as it reads the data (and encrypts as it writes).  So hard drive encryption does not protect your data on the network in any way.  

 

Therefore when you back up an encrypted drive over the network, the backup is not encrypted (unless the receiving system has also encrypted its data volume).

 

This also applies to backing up the the drive to an attached external drive.  The NAS decrypts before it copies the files.

 

AFAIK the NAS simply doesn't support microsoft bitlocker, and has no ability to read external drives protected with bitlocker.

 

 

Message 3 of 5
SuperNASman
Aspirant

Re: Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes

"Therefore when you back up an encrypted drive over the network, the backup is not encrypted (unless the receiving system has also encrypted its data volume)."

 

What about when you back up an encrypted NAS drive over USB? This backup is also not encrypted right?

 

BTW my usb is encrypted using bitlocker, so if someone got a hold of the USB they would have to decrypt it first to get the NAS key. This has the unfortunate downside of having to have the NAS run 24/7, unless I wanted to decrypt and encrypt the USB drive at every boot, so it's the best solution for me as far as USB keys go.

 

It sounds like what you guys are saying is that the only reasonable way to backup an encrypted nas, and keep the backup encrypted as well, is by backing up from one encrypted ReadyNAS to another encrypted ReadyNAS.

 

Is that correct?

 

It seems like there should be a better solution than that. Can you guys think of any?

 

Doesn't seem much of a point to an encrypted NAS if my backups can't be encrypted as well.

 

Thanks for your time!

 

 

 

 

Message 4 of 5
StephenB
Guru

Re: Backup of ReadyNAS that has Encrypted Volumes


@SuperNASman wrote:

What about when you back up an encrypted NAS drive over USB? This backup is also not encrypted right?


Correct.


@SuperNASman wrote:

It sounds like what you guys are saying is that the only reasonable way to backup an encrypted nas, and keep the backup encrypted as well, is by backing up from one encrypted ReadyNAS to another encrypted ReadyNAS.

 

Is that correct?


 There are some other options.  Some people use cloud backup (for instance CrashPlan).  

 

Or you can attach your bitlocker protected drive to your PC, and back up the NAS to it over the network.  You can do that from the PC (a robocopy script is fairly easy to create, and is incremental), or perhaps install deltacopy on the PC and set up an rsync backup job on the NAS. 

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