How to Encrypt a USB Flash Drive
A USB flash drive is the best way to store your sensitive information and transfer it to the computer or view it on a TV. Users commonly prefer Flash drives due to convenience and portability.
But, if your flash drive gets stolen or lost, then your data might fall into the wrong hands. Therefore, it’s crucial always to encrypt a USB flash drive.
In this blog post, you will learn how to secure your USB flash drive with encryption on Windows and macOS.
Why Encrypt a USB Flash Drive?
Encrypting a flash drive is important to protect your stored data. If your flash drive ever happens to get stolen or misplaced, then no one can access or read your data only if it’s encrypted.
The main purpose of encrypting a flash drive is to secure your data from unwanted access. No one can access encrypted data unless the person has the decryption key.
Also, non-encrypted flash drives are more prone to security and malware threats. Hence, Flash drive encryption is the only solution to combat such issues.
How to Encryption USB Drive
You can encrypt a USB flash drive by using specialized encryption software or through hardware-based encryption.
Flash drives with hardware-based encryption ask you to enter a password when you use it for the first time. You always have to enter the same password upon accessing your files.
USBs with pre-installed encryption don’t require anything additional like updates or installations. However, another way to encrypt a USB flash drive is using native software available on Windows and macOS, or through third-party applications. Encryption software enables you to select your preferred encryption algorithms, giving you more freedom.
What Are the Best Flash Drive Encryption Software
There are many encryption software to protect your files. You can also use iProVPN that gets you the highest AES 256-bit encryption protocol for a more secure file transfer.
However, here some to encrypt your flash drive.
- Rohos Disk Encryption
How to Encrypt a USB Flash Drive on Windows with BitLocker
Here’s how to encrypt your USB on Windows 7 or later using BitLocker native encryption tool:
- Insert an empty USB drive
- Search your USB name in the file explorer
- Right click on Flash drive and select Turn on BitLocker
- Now, you will be prompted to select how you would like to unlock your drive. Select “use a password”
- Enter your password and then confirm it. (you can change the password later if you want)
- You will be asked, “How Do You Want to Store your Recovery Key”, select “Save the Recovery Key to File” and save this recovery file in a secure file location.
- Now, select “Encrypt Used Space Only”
- Next, choose the encryption mode. For Windows 10 select New Encryption Mode. Select Compatible mode for the old Windows version.
- Click Start Encrypting
- Your USB flash drive has been encrypted!
How to encrypt your Flash Drive on Windows with VeraCrypt
VeraCrypt is an alternative to BitLocker. You can also use it to encrypt a USB flash drive. Here’s how to do it:
- Head to Veracrypt official page and install it on your device
- Insert your empty USB flash drive and open VeraCrypt
- Click where you see Create Volume
- Choose “Encrypt a non-system partition or drive”
- Now select “Standard VeraCrypt volume”
- Now, Under Volume Type, you should click “Select Device and find your flash drive”
- Select “Create encrypted volume and format it” for an empty flash drive
- Next, you can select your preferred encryption algorithms
- Click “Next” when you see Volume Size Window
- Enter your password
- Click “Format” on the Volume Front Window, once the progress bar turns green
- Wait for the drive encryption to be done and that’s it!
How to encrypt your flash drive on macOS
If you want to encrypt your USB flash drive on macOS then you should know that your macOS has built-in encryption software for flash drive encryption.
Here’s how to encrypt a flash drive on macOS:
- Connect your flash drive first, make sure it is empty
- In the Finder, on your Mac, search for Disk Utility
- On the left-hand side, select your device from the available list
- Head to Erase tab and select Extended (Journaled, Encrypted) in the Format box
- Now you will be prompted to enter password
- Select Encrypt, and it’s done.
Risks of Encrypting Flash Drives
- You will need the same encryption utility to decrypt your files
- Native encryption tool will only grant you access on the same operating system
- macOS and Windows have pre-installed encryption software, but it’s not installed by default.
If you keep valuable information within your devices, then encryption is a significant system to enable. Encryption only works when it is implemented using an authentic source. Just like the listed encryption software protects your data, iProVPN encrypts internet traffic so that any third party cannot intercept it.
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