Encrypting a laptop seems more like something from the movies than a step you’d take yourself, and it’s probably not necessary for any of your personal devices. However, any laptop used for work should be considered a candidate for encryption.
Essentially, encryption is another level of security. It converts your data into a kind of code, and authorisation must be provided to view that data in its useable state.
So, why should you encrypt your business laptops?
Encryption goes beyond passwords
People generally prefer using laptops instead of desktops thanks to the degree of freedom they provide. That’s understandable – the problem is that laptops are also a lot easier to steal than desktops, and, since laptops are often used in coffee shops or carried from home to office, there’s a far greater potential for theft.
This is a real problem with laptops that contain sensitive information. If your laptop is stolen, a password just isn’t good enough. Someone can still gain access to your data by:
- Using a guest account
- Using a different operating system
- Removing the hard drive and installing it on another device
Passwords are fine as first-level defence, but they’re only really useful when the device they protect is still in your care.
Encryption makes stolen data worthless
While passwords restrict access to your device, encryption can make what’s on that device impossible to read. Even if a hacker were to use extremely sophisticated software to steal your data, they would find it useless since malware cannot decrypt data. Similarly, most thieves do not have the capability to decrypt data. So, losing a laptop might mean having to replace the device, but it won’t mean suffering from data loss or, even worse, a data breach. Consider it a vital step towards protecting your business.