Friday 30 November 2007

How to Encrypt Your Data & Files When Emailing or Sending It

Its a shame that the no-one at HMRC thought about using one of the most commonly used software programs installed when sending their data Winzip.

The latest versions of Winzip have a built in encryption function that contains up to 256bit encryption, which should shop anyone apart from possibly MI5, GCHQ or the NSA from looking into your file.

To encrypt the data, all you do is create the zip file as normal and then:

1. Press the Encrypt buttom at the top of the Winzip tool bar

2. Select the type of encryption you want - I'd recommend the AES 256 bit option, rather than the weaker Winzip password which can be broken relativly easily.

3. Enter the password - the longer the better and ideally with numbers and characters

4. PC has an excellent password generator that will create random long passwords

4. That's it - the zip file is then encrypted and secure

You can now send it to anyone, just making sure you don't send the password in the same email

They'll need at least Winzip 10 or higher to read the file. When they extract the file, they'll be asked for the password. Once that has been successfully put in, they can extract the file.

Winzip is currently around £20 per user - a lot cheaper than a £5000 fine from the Information Commissioner

No comments: