We don’t give out silverware for the most frustrating kit to install. But if we did, the software that came with these SecuriKey USB Token dongles would be a shoe-in for a gong. Some annoyances with admin passwords on non-standard setups, software hangs and even a little note telling us there was no software to install, all litter the way to getting the product up and running. Perhaps the difficulties involved in installation are just part and parcel of the careful nature of the software, which, after all, is tasked with the job of locking down your Mac.

SecuriKey, once running, is actually a smart product. It uses the USB dongles as keys to protect your Mac. These work with any USB port, including those on hubs or your keyboard. You first set up the Mac to recognise the key, then tell the software what to do if the key isn’t docked with the Mac at any point.

Locked out

After configuration, without the ‘key’ docked, your user account password won’t give you access to the Mac. If the key is removed during your session the software switches you to the log-in window to try again. Without the key, even administrators are locked out.

In the previous version of SecuriKey you could still access the protected Mac in Target Disk mode. In this latest version, the software has been updated with encryption technology (accessed via System Preferences) and the ability to create a secure volume on your drive that you then fill with sensitive files. Without the key, this data just looks like gobbledegook in Target mode from the second Mac. This addition makes SecuriKey a much more rounded product than the earlier iteration.

Two identical keys come with the Pro edition: lose them and you’ll need to contact Griffin and buy a replacement dongle. The company will only send them to registered users.