A method and apparatus for granting selected access to material such as data and databases, messages and other textual information, graphs, tables, maps, facsimiles (FAX) of all manner of transmitted materials, audio such as speech and music, video, images, and photographs, provided on storage media utilizing information encoded in the storage media. The storage media are included in one or more reading devices associated with a computer. A storage accessing device, such as a smart card, is used in conjuction with the computer to determine whether access to a particular user to specific storage media is granted. The storage media can be sub-divided into a plurality of logical zones and access to all or a portion of the material on the storage media is granted based upon the logical zones to which the user is allowed access. Information provided on the storage media would include an index table listing the security identification code, the logical zones to which a particular user is assigned as well as a personal security key used in conjunction with a personal security key provided in the smart card. The interaction between the user's personal accessing device and the index table provided on the storage media determine if access is granted as well as access privileges accorded to the user.