What is encryption?
Encryption garbles your data by using irreversible mathematical functions. It is simply the encoding of data so that it cannot be read by anyone who does not know the password that decodes it.
Why do I need encryption?
Data on almost every computer is vulnerable. There is no privacy at all on most PC's. Privacy is something that we take for granted in the real world but do not pay much attention in the digital world. Your PC is open, vulnerable and totally accessible to any one from your neighbor who shares the cable modem to the proverbial 13 year old! Given the ease with which most computers can be broken into, there is very little one can do, save the obvious - what we do in real life - protect information. This is easiest done by encryption, so that even if it is stolen or accessed without your permission or knowledge, it is useless.
How secure is Encryption?
Passwords within most programs (Word, Excel, Access etc.) can be broken by mere novices without any computing knowledge. Such password breaking tools are easily available on the Worldwide Web, for as little as $5.95, or sometimes even for free!
Encrypt your entire hard drive with one of these tools:
We suggest using TrueCrypt or DriveCrypt. We use it on all of our office computers.
As data is read from the hard disk, the application automatically decrypts the data before it is loaded into memory. When data is written back to the hard disk, it is automatically re-encrypted. The encryption/ decryption process is completely transparent to the user or any application program -the data is caught "on the fly" as it transfers back and forth between the hard disk and memory. Consequently, users don't need to remember to decrypt or re-encrypt their data, or change the normal operation of the PC. In addition, only individual files are decrypted at any one time, not the whole hard disk.