Encrypting “data at rest” is a term referring to the encryption of your data when it’s on your computer or any kind of removable media (e.g. thumbdrive). Encryption at rest is critical in protecting your data in the event your computer is physically lost or stolen. In this short tutorial, we're going to show you how to enable encryption for your Windows or Mac computers.
Microsoft Windows Vista and higher offer a built-in encryption capability called BitLocker. BitLocker can easily be enabled without adding any new software. To enable BitLocker:
- Open your Control Panel
- Select "System and Security"
- Select "BitLocker Drive Encryption"
- Select “Enable Bitlocker”
Note: Windows versions prior to Vista (e.g., Windows XP) will require additional software for encryption and are outside of the scope of this tutorial.
This process can take a long time, depending on the amount of data on your hard drive. Please leave the computer running while this process completes.
Apple Mac OSX
Apple Mac operating systems also come with a free and built-in encryption solution called FileVault. To check if FileVault is enabled:
- Open "System Preferences"
- Select "Security & Privacy"
- Select the "FileVault" button at the top.
- Select “Turn On FileVault”.
As with the Windows instructions, this process can take a long time depending on the amount of data on your hard drive. Please leave your Mac running while this process completes.
Encrypting your data with modern computer hardware and software has become much easier with the built-in solutions. We recommend always enabling Full Disk Encryption (like BitLocker and FileVault) wherever possible, and most critically on mobile computers.
For more information on this topic please reach out to us; We’re here to help!