A note on file encryption

With all the data breaches in the news lately, you’ve probably heard the word “encryption” more times than you’d like. In layman’s terms encryption is a method of protecting your data so that only the people that you intend to see the data have access to it. This can be done while that data is at rest on your system or in transit across the internet.

One major misconception with file encryption is that some form of “password protection” is as good as file encryption. When we look at the nature of passwords, people often use simple passwords for applications and files that they access often. If you have a file with sensitive account information that you use on a daily basis, chances are you aren’t using a complex password that is 16 characters or more.

The encryption of data at rest should follow some best practices such as: using strong encryption methods, data should remain encrypted when normal access controls such as username/passwords fail and should be encrypted on multiple levels if the data is sensitive.

In this issue, we will be focusing on software that provides file and disk encryption to protect the data at rest.

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