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Monday, July 29, 2013

TrueCrypt (Open Source Encryption) - Very elegant solution for personal computing and small businesses

TrueCrypt is an open source encryption solution. It got my attention so I wanted to write a quick post about it.

Before finding out about TrueCrypt, I have been using WinZip over the years and no complaints about it. WinZip is easy to use and it allows you to do AES-256-bit encryption which is what matters to me. It is good for compressing the files and safely sending the zip files in an email or uploading to your cloud. Let's assume you wanted keep a set of files on your hard-drive encrypted. With WinZip, you can compress the files into a single zip file and delete the original files. So if you want to edit a file, you have to open the zip file and edit file or unzip the zip file and then edit the file.

TrueCrypt takes a different approach. The end result of your TrueCrypt setup is that you have a mounted drive (i.e. M:  )  on your Windows computer. Any folders/files that you place on that drive is automatically encrypted; you don't have to worry about compressing and unzipping any files. It is all seamless to you once everything is set up.

So if somebody ends up stealing your computer/laptop, they are stuck with a hard-drive that has encrypted information for the volume that represented your mount/drive. Assuming that you used a very strong password for your mount/drive, it could take months or years for somebody to decrypt that information.

How do you set it up?
- Install TrueCrypt desktop application  (http://www.truecrypt.org)
- Create a Volume and assign the size.
- Mount the volume onto a drive letter (i.e. M: )
- Start using it as any other drive on your computer and put files on it. It is that simple.

Small Businesses and TrueCrypt?

Let's assume you a real-estate agent, or a loan officer, or a lawyer who keeps the personal information of their clients on the work computers. If you don't have an IT department in your company and an Information Security department, then you need to definitely consider using TrueCrypt and implementing it yourself.

Enjoy !


Keywords: #TrueCrypt #Encryption #Decryption #AES #security #software #smallbusiness
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