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Hard Drive Encryption


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16 replies to this topic

Poll: Do You? Or Don't You? (14 member(s) have cast votes)

Do you encrypt your hard drives and USB sticks

  1. Yes (4 votes [28.57%])

    Percentage of vote: 28.57%

  2. Voted No (10 votes [71.43%])

    Percentage of vote: 71.43%

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#1 NickAu

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Posted 10 July 2015 - 11:35 PM

I was just reading a topic about getting rid of an old hard drive. Hard Drives ~ Annihilate! And notice there are some " Interesting " ways of making sure that nobody can recover the data.
 
 And this bit got me thinking.

How about just formating it and throwing it in the rubbish bin?

Yep, far too much paranoia about hard drive erasure. A full format in Windows (Vista or later) writes zeros over the drive. No-one who doesn't have access to a magnetic microscope and endless spare time is going to be able to recover data. However thoroughly smashing it would be quicker...

 
While people are worried when disposing of a old hard drive that somebody might find the drive and recover the data, I bet these same people do not use drive encryption.
 
How many of you use a laptop? How many of you take the laptop with you to work, or another public place such as a train, airport, coffee shop?
 
Every year thousands of laptops are lost and stolen, I bet the majority of those are not encrypted.
Even at home your Desktop PC is at risk of being stolen. And I bet a lot of people here also use Auto log in for websites, And Auto Complete software when creating an account.  And I bet these same people have their passwords saved some place like Documents folder as a plain .txt or word.
 
 
Now I hear you say, " But you need a password to log into my pc " You are kidding right? A log in password is not that hard to bypass, Regardless of Operating System.  Its not to hard to mount a drive and explore its contents and export files.
 
Drive encryption changes the rules.
 
Done correctly even places like the NSA CGHQ and CIA might find that it may take years if ever to recover anything but gibberish without the key.
 
Now my question is.
 
Do you encrypt your hard drives and USB sticks? And if no why not.

Edited by Animal, 10 July 2015 - 11:43 PM.


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#2 TsVk!

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 01:00 AM

Can't be bothered.... no one wants my useless psychobable documents anyway.

 

All of my secure sites have a very secure password that I enter manually, the rest get a variation if the same one that I've been modifying for a decade now. Would be a shame to lose my account on a couple of forums... but the reality is I could probably get them back by talking to people.



#3 Didier Stevens

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 07:34 AM

I do.


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#4 JohnC_21

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 07:39 AM

I don't use drive encryption but I have important data stored on a hard drive so I use a Truecrypt container file, not full drive encryption.



#5 Aura

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 09:02 AM

I used to have my first HDD encrypted with BitLocker, but not my SSD. However, since my desktop was located on that HDD, my SSD would often load Windows faster than my HDD could unlock and load the desktop so I would receive an error saying the desktop couldn't be loaded and nothing would appear on it (no files, folders, shortcuts, etc.) so I had to recreate it. So after 1-2 months I decrypted it. Once I upgrade to Windows 10, I might encrypt my SSD and both my HDD using BitLocker and see how it goes.

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#6 rp88

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Posted 11 July 2015 - 12:13 PM

I don't encrypt my hard-drive, it's un-necessary and carries the small risk of problems (if something ever went wrong with windows and I needed to use a live OS to boot up and do something to fix the problems with an encrypted HDD this couldn't work) without particular gains (for me, for others I can see that full HDD encryption can be very useful), I don't encrypt whole USb sticks either, I do encrypt 7z archives containing anything private and personal I have.

Infact the very reason I do not encrypt my hard-drive is because if I did then it would NOT be possible to mount it in something else or to boot with a live OS, I may someday need to do one of these. I think the chance of my needing to do one of these is higher than the chance of someone getting physically hold of my laptop, AND then bypassing my windows password (this isn't that difficult for someone to do), AND then managing to either decrypt my 7z files (practically impossible) OR to find the remnants of the files deleted before they were encrypted (it's ages since those originals were deleted so there's a good chance they've been overwriten by now).

This way I can copy the encrypted folder onto USb drives, CD discs or upload to online backup services just like any other file, but seeing the contents within requires a password stored only in my head. I don't have that many private files, all together my private stuff fits within a hundred megabytes of 7z archives.


I use no autologin systems at all, I do not store passwords in my browser or in a vault program, important passwords are stored in my head only, less important ones are stored on paper pads in a locked safe.


I would never dispose of a USB or HDD without physically destroying it first (if it's going in the trash why stop at just wiping by software based means), unless someone was willing to buy it, in which case I would wipe it several times first.

Edited by rp88, 11 July 2015 - 12:18 PM.

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#7 Nikhil_CV

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 05:22 AM

All my personal files are encrypted and stored in laptop. Its backup is stored offline, again in encrypted form.
I too use TC for better peace of mind. :)
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#8 O.T.T.

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Posted 15 July 2015 - 05:33 PM

No full hard drive encryption here !

 

CryptSync for all online backups, AxCrypt for sensitive files (passwords and a few private files).

I also have a couple of TrueCrypt v7.1a volumes for storing the CryptSync/AxCrypt files and for experiments...

 

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#9 JohnC_21

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Posted 16 July 2015 - 06:55 AM

Now that Truecrypt is unsupported with addititonal releases one may look at Veracrypt. Truecrypt releases and manuals are still available at GRC.com here.

 

https://veracrypt.codeplex.com/



#10 Guest_hollowface_*

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 12:43 AM


Do you encrypt your hard drives and USB sticks? And if no why not.

 

Currently I don't, but in recent years I have considered doing such. I'm not totally exposed, as files I don't want just anyone accessing are stored in encrypted archives, nor do I ever use password remembering tools/features, but I could definitely stand to improve my security in this area.



#11 softeyes

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 12:49 AM

I voted 'no'..only due to my ignorance and lack of knowing "how" to accomplish this with my knowledge.

Thank heavens there is always another rung on the ladder for growth!

 

NickAu..do you have an idiots tutorial for a beginners guide to encrypt even a folder as a start?

 

Thanks for your poll!  :wink:



#12 Aura

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Posted 17 July 2015 - 05:26 AM

There's also DiskCryptor, which I didn't see mentionned in this thread yet.

https://diskcryptor.net/wiki/Main_Page

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#13 Nikhil_CV

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 08:15 AM

Have been a user of DC and TC (on different machines) for more than 5years..... :)
Regards : CV                                                                                                    There is no ONE TOUCH key to security!
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                                                     Questions are to be asked, it helps you, me and others.  Knowledge is power, only when its shared to others.            :radioactive: signature contents © cv and Someone....... :wink:

#14 Aura

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 08:45 AM

Which one do you use for full drive encryption? :P

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#15 rp88

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Posted 18 July 2015 - 10:04 AM

softeyes post #11, how to geek has many tutorials about this. Many are for truecrypt, which was mysteriously abandoned by it's developer no-one is sure whether truecrypt had a bug in or if it was in perfect condition when abandoned, and some are for other encryption programs. I think truecrupt is still available from some sources. If however you just want to encrypt a few files, rather than a whole hard-drive or USB stick then using an archiving program, with encryption features, like 7zip might be best. 7zip can be downloaded in bleeping computer's downloads section. Encrypting an archive like this will be easier than encrypting a whole drive, and there are less things which could go wrong.
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