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Check How To Protect a USB Drive with Password On Windows PC
Many of us store important data on USB flash drives. Many of us even back up vital data to USB flash drives. If you carry data on USB flash drives or back up your PC data to USB flash drives, it is a good idea to password lock it to preserve your data if you lose it.
There are many applications available to password protect the data on your USB device. Most USB flash drive manufacturers provide their own software to protect USB devices with passwords. SanDisk USB drives, for example, can be password protected using approved software. The WD Security software can also be used to password protect Western Digital external drives.
The problem is, most of us either format the USB drive or just remove all the apps before using it. There are dozens of third-party software options to password protect the data on your USB device, in addition to the official applications. But why use third-party software when Windows 10 has a built-in option to password protect USB flash drives and hard drives?
If you have Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise, you can easily password encrypt your USB flash drive using the built-in BitLocker To Go feature.
Protect your USB drive with a password using BitLocker
Password protecting a USB flash drive or external USB hard drive with BitLocker is easy. Just follow the given instructions to password protect your USB drive using BitLocker in Windows 10.
Step 1: Connect your USB stick or hard drive to your Windows 10 PC running Pro or Enterprise edition.
Step 2: Navigate to This PC. There, the right button of the mouse on the USB drive and then click Turn on BitLocker option.
Step 3: Please select Use a password to unlock the drive check box, enter a password to protect your data on the USB drive, re-enter the password to verify the password, and then click next button.
To make your password secure, use at least one uppercase letter, one number, one lowercase letter, and one symbol.
Step 4: In this step, BitLocker offers you three ways to back up the recovery key, in case you forget the password. You can save the key to your Microsoft account (if you are using one to log in), save to a file, or print the recovery key and keep it in a safe place.
Click any of these options to backup the key.
Click next button.
Step 5: Below you will see Choose the amount of your USB drive to encrypt screen with two options:
# Encrypt used disk space (faster and better for PCs and new drives)
# Encrypt entire disk (slower but better for PCs and disks already in use)
We recommend that you select Encrypt the entire disk option.
Click next button.
Step 6: Finally, you have to choose which encryption mode to use. You can choose the method you want, but we suggest that you select Compatible mode (best for units that can be moved from this device).
Click next button.
Step 7: Click Start encrypting to start encrypting your disk. This can take from a few minutes to hours, depending on what you chose in Step 5.
You can use your PC and continue through this process. After encryption is complete, you will see the message “Encryption of X is complete.” Now you can disconnect the drive.
Access password protected USB drive
Step 1: To open This PC to view your USB drive.
Step 2: Double click on the USB drive icon. You should now see a message asking you to enter the password. Enter the password and then click the Unlock button to access the data on your USB drive.
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