“Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t after you” ― Joseph Heller
Data Encryption and Why Every Company Needs It
Just like in private life we guard our privacy we do the same in business. The difference is obvious – the stakes are higher. Protecting company data means personal information of all employees (often hundreds of people), potential plans of future projects and investments, company financial information, etc. Before and during recent presidential election we heard plenty about sending emails via insecure sources. In current times, whether it is personal, business or government data, electronic information needs to be encrypted, because information is the new currency and when it gets in the wrong hands it means trouble, serious trouble. Even if you have never considered doing so before, now is the time to put additional blanket over your enterprise’s secret information.
How to Encrypt Data on a Budget
Windows 10 has BitLocker Drive Encryption. If you have a Professional edition of Windows 10 installed on your PC, you can search for “BitLocker” in the Start menu and use the BitLocker control panel to enable it. If you upgraded for free from Windows 7 Professional or Windows 8.1 Professional, you should have Windows 10 Professional.
In case you don’t have a Professional edition of Windows 10, you can pay $99 to upgrade your Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Professional. Open the Settings app, navigate to Update & security > Activation, and click the “Go to Store” button. You’ll gain access to BitLocker and the other features that Windows 10 Professional includes.
Another Way to Encrypt Data
Alternative to Bit-locker is a TrueCrypt which is an open source full-disk encryption tool that still works with Windows 10 and is an additional option. There are also other full-disk encryption tools based on TrueCrypt. These are free, open-source encryption tools you can install on Windows 10 Home or previous versions of Windows to encrypt your hard drive if you don’t have access to BitLocker. If you have a more advance PC you might have to play around with TrueCrypt in order to make it work. However, if you have a PC from the era of Windows 7 and you’ve upgraded to Windows 10, there should be no problem.
Whichever solution you decide to go with, make sure that you take the step of protecting data by encryption. You might think that you have no important information that would be of any value. Reality has shown in the past few years though, that hackers just wait for opportunities to steal information and use it to their benefit. You need to be extremely careful, especially if you are a business owner whose hands hold crucial personal data of employees.