Every time I am in the airport I see all kinds of people using laptops, myself included. What happens if your laptop is stolen while you are traveling? Or what if someone hacks into your computer from a remote location? How much damage could they do if they had your most important data?
You don’t want someone with bad intentions accessing, using, or selling your data. You have two options, and you can do one or both. You can encrypt your entire hard drive and/or encrypt individual folders. I found two articles that tell you what you need to know.
This linked article tells you how to encrypt your hard drive, whether you have a Mac, Windows, or Linux computer. Windows and Mac computers already have the software built in. You just need to know how to turn it on and use it. All your data is encrypted, Be sure you save your “key” and password in a safe place.
If you don’t want to encrypt your hard drive and all of its contents, but you do want to encrypt specific folders, like, for instance, one with your financial data, you need some good software that will do that. You may not care if someone hacks into your computer and steals your photo of Uncle Fred, but you don’t want some hacker to see or gain access to your retirement account. TrueCrypt used to be THE free software for encrypting specific folders on your hard drive, but TrueCrypt went away several years ago. This article discusses several software possibilities to do the job. Depending on the software you choose, sure you save your “key” and/or password in a safe place.
Maybe you want to do both, protect all your data and photos, but add additional encryption to some specific folders. You can do that too. Just follows the instructions in both articles.
Stay safe out there!