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Why you Should be Using TrueCrypt


In this day and age nothing is safe; data stored on your computer, USB or other storage device is susceptible to frequent attacks. Even if you're taking the basic recommended precautions, your information could be compromised. Personal or financial information that isn't properly secured could lead to identity theft and financial ruin.

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Through a cyber attack or physical examination of your computer, passwords can be revealed and encryption algorithms can eventually be cracked, allowing the attacker access to all of your information. Sometimes through confusion, misunderstanding, or pure forgetfulness, an individual could inadvertently fail to encrypt his information or do it incorrectly.

Fortunately, TrueCrypt helps defend against security weaknesses like human error, device and software insecurity and has the following impressive features

  • On-the-fly encryption so you'll never worry about forgetting;
  • Hidden volumes with no encryption signatures so no one can tell you have any encrypted data;
  • Open Source software so vulnerabilities are quickly fixed;
  • TrueCrypt is for free.

What is TrueCrypt?

TrueCrypt is a free and open source software application for your computer or storage device and is used for real time encryption. The software automatically encrypts your data, either on your entire storage device or encrypts a partition (only a part), without any user intervention. Once you have adjusted your settings and which device or partition you want encrypted, everything after happens automatically. You don't need to know how to encrypt files; the program does it for you.

TrueCrypt software allows a user to access or copy files from the encrypted volume just as easily as with an unencrypted storage device; for example, copying and editing files from a UBS. The ease of use not only allows a user to read a file but do so securely by decrypting the data and storing it in RAM. This means the data can be read or edited, but the ability to read it is only temporary. When a user shuts down her computer, the encrypted volume is automatically dismounted and the files can no longer be read from the RAM.

Part II: TrueCrypt Features

Written by: 
Robin Welles; expats team, internet security team