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Computers are so essential to living in the modern world that everyone has a basic idea of how to keep the devices they use daily secure. Most smartphones, tablets and laptops will prompt you to establish password or PIN protection as part of their initial set up.

But that’s not enough to keep your information safe, especially if you handle sensitive data on your device. Cybercriminals are aware of the typical steps people take to protect their hardware and can bypass them with only minimal effort.

Portable devices can get mislaid or stolen, making it all too easy for your information to fall into the wrong hands. If someone has access to your hard drive, even if it is password protected, not only is it possible to access everything you have saved to it, but someone could easily also get into your backed-up email inbox. All your messages, contacts and even deleted information can be explored, revealing private information about you, your company or your customers.

This means that a single missing laptop could put you at risk of identity theft, violation of data protection laws and financial damages that far exceed the cost of the device itself.

The most effective way to protect this data is by encrypting your hard drive. Encryption scrambles your stored data, making it impossible to decode without a decryption key. This makes your hard drive inaccessible to anyone but you in a way that standard password protection does not.

In our latest video, we demonstrate exactly how simple it is to break into an unencrypted hard drive using common tools and software, and how easy it is to prevent this.