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Full Disk Encryption
Set up and use full disk encryption to protect your private data, especially when travelling. Full disk encryption uses mathematical techniques to scramble data so it is unintelligible without the right key. This works independently of the policies configured in the operating system software. A different operating system or computer cannot just decide to allow access, because no computer or software can make any sense of the data without access to the right key.
Here's a useful primer on disk encryption and why it might be the most important investment you can make in your data. Windows users have access to Microsoft BitLocker while TrueCrypt provides the most cross-platform compatibility.