October 09, 2023
It’s important to keep your files safe, especially if they contain sensitive information. Encrypting your files helps protect the contents inside, but are they difficult to decrypt? Not at all! Learn more about encrypted files and how to decrypt them in just a few steps on Windows 11.
What is an encrypted file?
An encrypted file is locked with a specific digital key. By encrypting a file, you can help protect it from getting in the hands of internet hackers or unauthorized users. Encrypted files are handy for when you need to send something personal via email or are using an external storage drive to transport a file. Files are most vulnerable to cyberattacks once they are sent out, and file encryption helps keep your personal information safe in transit.
How to encrypt a file
Windows 11 makes it easy to encrypt your files. Follow the steps below to keep your information safe:
How to decrypt a file
To decrypt an encrypted file, simply repeat the steps above and uncheck the box next to Encrypt contents to secure data. After unchecking the box, select OK in the Advanced Attributes window and the Properties window. Double-check to make sure the padlock is no longer attached to your file.
Other ways to keep your files safe
Uploading your file to the cloud adds an extra layer of protection. By using a cloud storage platform like Microsoft OneDrive, you can keep your files secure and access them from any device. OneDrive also allows users to encrypt files with the OneDrive Personal Vault feature¹, which protects your most sensitive information with identity verification.
Looking for tips on using Windows 11? Check out the Windows Learning Center to find more articles.
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