Archives - Encryption


How does ransomware work?

Ransomware identifies the drives on an infected system and begins to encrypt the files within each drive. Ransomware generally adds an extension to the encrypted files, such as .aaa, .micro, .encrypted, .ttt, .xyz, .zzz, .locky, .crypt, .cryptolocker, .vault, or .petya, to show that the files have been encrypted—the file extension used is unique to the […]

Encrypt your main hard drive

PCs and Macs support full-disk encryption, which is a useful way to protect your data if your device is ever lost or stolen. On a Mac, enabling it is as simple as activating FileVault. On Windows, use Device Encryption or the more advanced BitLocker (which can also encrypt devices like removable USB drives). Phones and […]

First-Time Student Laptop Safety Checklist

While phones and tablets have become the go-to computing devices for many students, the laptop still has an important role to play. Any assignments requiring a lot of typing or working with complex documents such as slide decks or long PDFs, are usually better suited to the laptop’s unique capabilities. Many laptop models now even […]

Use encrypted messaging apps instead of SMS when possible

Text messages, sent via carrier SMS, are fixtures of mobile communications. But they’ve lost ground to over-the-top (i.e., internet-based) services such as Apple iMessage, WhatsApp and Telegram. Those alternatives are not only more richly featured, but many have end-to-end encryption as well – something SMS and even its successor, RCS, do not support.

Set up security code change notifications in WhatsApp

Every WhatsApp conversation has its own security code to indicate that the exchange is encrypted end-to-end. It is presented as both a 60-digit code and a QR code. Sometimes, the code will change, such as when someone switches devices or reinstalled the app. You can turn on notifications about these changes within WhatsApp settings so […]

Learn how to encrypt your hard drive on Windows or MacOS

If your computer were ever lost, you’d want the peace of mind that the data contained on it wouldn’t be recoverable by whoever stole or found it. Full-disk encryption is the best solution here. Both Microsoft Windows and Apple MacOS contain built-in utilities – BitLocker and FileVault, respectively – for encrypting all of your local […]