We all are increasingly becoming aware that our digital lives are no longer individuals. Not only are they no longer private – in fact, but they also may never be. Maybe it’s time to think about coding.
There are several easy ways to encrypt email. There are also several methods for encrypting the thumb and hard drive.
Windows 8.1 Pro, the version of Windows offered by Microsoft on the website, includes built-in disk encryption tools. These tools work even if you don’t have a TPM chip. The TPM, or Trusted Platform Module, is the built-in encrypted hardware. You will need a leftover USB drive.
Cheerfully, the encryption tools are hidden at the depths of the machine, so finding them can make you feel like a Mysterious International.
However, here is how to go about it:
Verify that your computer is running Windows 8 Pro or Windows 8.1 Pro by launching Control Panel. You can access the Control Panel from Windows 8’s new search bar – “Control Panel” in the search box.
Click or tap System and Security, then System. The Windows version will be listed.
Tip: Windows 8 Encryption is called “BitLocker.” It is included with Windows 7 and Windows Vista Enterprise and Ultimate; It is also available in Pro and Enterprise editions of Windows 8.
Enter the term “gpedit.msc” into the charm search text box. Then browse through the hierarchical menu structure, moving from Open Computer Configuration to Administrative Templates to Windows Components to BitLocker Drive Encryption to the OS drives.
Then right-click on the third option, labeled “Require additional authentication at startup.” Then check Allow BitLocker without the TPM compatibility check box. Click Apply and then OK.
Enter the word “BitLocker” into the Windows Search Charm and then “Manage BitLocker.” Or scroll down to BitLocker Drive Encryption from System in Control Panel.
Turn on BitLocker.
Insert a USB thumb drive into the computer’s USB socket and follow the instructions.
Tip: You can use a password instead of a USB drive. However, the USB drive method is more secure because it’s a physical factor – you need to insert the USB drive to access the computer. It’s also more entertaining.
Create a Recovery Key by following the prompts to save the backed-up key to an external source – like another computer on the network or a second USB drive – or by printing.
Tip: The recovery key is a backup key.
Select the number of drives you want to encrypt by selecting the appropriate radio button.
Tip: Encrypt the entire drive if you’re using an existing computer rather than a new computer. It takes longer but will catch lost files.
Select the Run BitLocker System Check check box. This will verify the encryption key.
Restart the computer. Your computer will restart, and the drive will begin to encrypt. The USB drive should be in the USB slot for this step. Enables encryption to take place.
Remove the USB flash drive and restart the PC to check. You will be prompted to insert the USB drive key.