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Monolith Data Recovery

Secure Data Recovery Services has a full suite of data recovery techniques for any type of digital media you can imagine. Most recently, they have added the capability to recover data from non-functional monolithic USB flash drives, which are known simply as "monoliths."

Monolith Data Recovery

The clever engineering staff at Secure Data Recovery Services has developed ingenious techniques for recovering data from monolith devices.

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What Are Monoliths?

Until monoliths arrived, the internals of USB flash drives and camera memory cards consisted of a small circuit board with discrete controller and NAND memory chips. When these break, extracting the seemingly lost data is accomplished by removing the memory chip and reading off the data using a digital programming device.

However, monoliths are just what their name implies. The circuits, controller and memory comprise a single, enclosed electronic unit with no external connections other than the four "fingers" needed to connect with a USB or memory card slot.

For manufacturers, monoliths are less expensive to manufacture, lighter, smaller and impervious to moisture and other environmental hazards. However, these advantages make it challenging to retrieve data from the memory portion.

Challenging but not Impossible

The clever engineering staff at Secure Data Recovery Services has met the challenge of monoliths with ingenious techniques for recovering data from these new devices.

X-Ray Analysis

Today, the process is rather straightforward, but before procedures were developed, these devices had to be analyzed carefully with various tools. The first step was to take an X-ray of monoliths in order to determine their structure. Devices vary but generally controller and memory portions are visible in configurations similar to their conventional predecessors.

Determining Memory Pin-Out

The next step was to carefully remove the outer device coating to reveal connection points to which a logic analyzer could be attached. Attaching an analyzer requires some extremely delicate soldering.

Once the analyzer is in place, diligent reverse engineering determines the function of each exposed "pin." As analysis progresses, a functional picture forms that shows these devices work, in a logical sense, just like the previous type of USB flash drives with discrete, exposed chips.

Further use of a logic analyzer as the device boots and transfers data leads to a decoding of the protocols, which in turn leads to being able to recover the data the device contains.

Rebuilding the Data

Once the exact type of NAND memory embedded in a monolith is determined, the transfer protocol and memory layout can be understood.

Clearly, monoliths require more time and effort to decipher and manage than conventional flash memory devices, but Secure Data Recovery Services has developed highly efficient processes along with the use of leading-edge tools and software to extract the otherwise inaccessible data in the quickest time possible. Once the data can be read, a complete memory image is reconstructed.

Same Security, Advanced Technology and Guarantee

Of course, free analysis and evaluation plus the same care and security is applied to monolith devices as any other digital data device you bring to Secure Data Recovery Services' facilities. The work will be performed in their industry-leading Class 10 ISO 4 Cleanroom following the strictest privacy and security standards such as adherence to SSAE 16 SOC 1 Type II & SOC 2 Type I standards and EU-U.S. Privacy Shield.

If you have lost access to data on a USB flash drive or memory card, whether it be a monolith device or not, call Secure Data Recovery Services' knowledgeable support staff immediately at 1-800-388-1266 to initiate a recovery order. Remember that all our work is backed by world-class expertise, technology and our No-Recovery-No-Charge guarantee.

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