Home PC - security measures ?

I finally got around to installing Real Crypt (also known as True Crypt) and put my financial information inside a large encrypted file. That’s a start of making my PC more secure. I still have more to do.

Did you install that from the Truecrypt web site’s download or some repo?

I tried truecrypt under XP about 4 years ago but ran into some problems with container corruption and also it was complicated making / restoring backups of the encrypted partitions. All that made me nervous that I could loose some important data so removed it after 5-6 months.

In fact all data encryption scares me a little because if something goes wrong with the encryption or you end up with some other corruption of the key you basically have no chance of recovering the data unless you are prepared to pay a lot and send the disk away to a specialist.

On the other hand I would like to keep my confidential data safe so keep thinking about trying encryption again.

I can’t remember where I got it from, and I am not at my home pc right now. But I do note truecrypt is available on the OBS: software.opensuse.org: Search Results

I think it has come a long ways since then. Its pretty easy to mount and unmount the encrypted data file which then appears as a partition once mounted.

Indeed ! It scares me too. BUT one can setup the encrypted file so that it can be un-encypted on any PC with the appropriate decryption code and the True Crypt (Real Crypt) software. Then keep an offsite backup, and TEST the ability to access the backed up encrypted off site data with an off site PC.

That is always the philosophical trade off when it comes to security. The security that one obtains always comes at a price and the question must always be asked … Is it worth it ? There are times in life when the added security is NOT worth the price that one must pay.

Were the concerns over licensing resolved with TrueCrypt? It was blacklisted at one time.

Thanks for the link. That’s the repo I found too. I’ll give it a try. Just need to do a little research how it will affect my backups and whether the backed files will be still be “decryptable” with the key and software from another PC.

There certainly are drawbacks to security in a day to day working environment. Having to manually mount and / or enter a password to gain access to an encrypted file or drive can be tiresome with all the other passwords we already need to enter to login, access web pages, locked documents, etc. As you say

The security that one obtains always comes at a price and the question must always be asked … Is it worth it ? There are times in life when the added security is NOT worth the price that one must pay.

Personally I archive files on an encrypted partition and encrypt that file with gpg. I keep back copies as well.

For some reason i think life get more and more complicated through the invention of the computer.

Personally, i do not store a lot of important documents on my harddrive and print really important things out so i can store them in a not crashable folder.
But if you like me, a book (your personal diary) makes a good partner in storing all your passwords and other useful stuff like to write down some terminal commands and stuff like that.

I haven’t looked into encrypting my harddrives really, but this is perhaps the safest way to ensure privacy in the event that your computer gets stolen.
Most people, even thief’s, don’t have the knowledge to hack it, or on the other hand, it forces them to use a lot of labor for a puny harddrive from person named Mike. Unless of course you are a celebrity.

Most important in my point, is to keep your receipts of everything you purchase. That should be suffice for your insurance.

According to news, people tend to give their passwords out for chocolate. That was employees.Betrug im Internet: Neun Tipps gegen die Tricks der Datendiebe - SPIEGEL ONLINE - Nachrichten - Netzwelt sorry, its in german.
So, don’t ever tell anyone what password you use or any hint.
I usually generate my password like this.
Couple of letters kjfdfkljd plus added some numbers 34839 plus added some alternative letters like this $&*$$. This makes already a good password and its not that easy to hack.

Since i don’t encrypt my harddrive. Anyone who steals my harddrive will enjoy the content i stored.
But that is the lazy factor.

Personally, i still dream of a selfdestruction sequence that will be triggered once the pc leaves my desk. >:)

I’m not so certain it is lazy … the approach I am leaning toward following is similar. I try hard to make the OS on my hard drive as enjoyable as possible, so that there is strong temptation not to reformat the hard drive.

Critical/important/sensitive financial data I now plan to keep in a large encrypted file, that is named innocuously to look like a system file. Then when I have a financial transaction to make, I mount that file with True Crypt (realcrypt) which decrypts the input/output such that I can store data on it and also access the data on it. When mounted, it sort of looks like a mounted USB stick.

I plan to regularly back up the file and keep it off site, so that if the PC is stolen, I do not lose that data.

And for the vast majority of the hard drive (that is unencrypted) I hope it is tempting to keep and not reformat. I will likely set up the OS so that it will “call home” if/when stolen. If I were to encrypt the entire drive, I would completely eliminate the possibility of the computer ever ‘calling home’ as the perpetrator of the crime of theft would have no choice but to reformat or replace the hard drive/OS.

Well, i call it lazy because i am. At least if its about security on my computer.
To me, the biggest thread is not a thief, but what happens to my identity on the web. Google wants to know what i am doing and there are so many bots and cookies that you just don’t know what its going on.

But, i totally agree that a folder with very important documents encrypted should be a suffice approach to protect these kind of data’s.
Not sure about the call back thing since i don’t even know how it works (have to read on to it).
Your Harddrive password can also be disabled if you put a another linux cd in. Bios should not be a problem since you can just take the battery off and it resets to default.
If its encrypted it may be harder or perhaps impossible. Just hope that the thief is nice and doesn’t force you to decrypt it.