A USB drive is a storage system that lets you store the essential and data backups to prevent them from being lost. It can store all your digital files in an organized strategy that makes both accessing and inserting a particular file, an effortless task. They are designed to have multifunctionality and support various latest technologies to make the storage system superficial.
Digital files are now an indispensable part of our lives. They have now turned into an asset that plays a major role in our accustomed chores both personally and professionally. Securing the files is the crucial part. All you need is a portable yet reliable device that can secure your data more precisely than you do.
USB drives are one such compatible device that can be used anywhere as they are portable and compatible at the same time. This may be unfavorable under some conditions. A stranger can get their hands on your device and can even misuse your data. This is the reason for which you must learn how to password protect a USB drive! The below guide contains all the relevant information you are searching for. Check out the sections and password protect the USB drive to prevent anonymous actions on it.
Why Protect Your USB?
Each one of you may own a USB drive. Not every USB drive is used for work and professional purposes. Some of them even hold the personal data of the users such as images, videos, and other important documents and files. This is one of the biggest reasons for which you should consider having a password protect USB drive. Besides this, there are too many other reasons for which you should password protect flash drives. They are as follows-
- Losing data and other documents- Keeping a flash drive without any password is of course not safe. There lies a huge risk of losing your data in multiple ways. For instance, if you leave your USB drive idle on your device, then during some operations the data and files of your device may be deleted by chance.
- Ensure safety and security- This is the most important factor for why you should know “how to password protect a flash drive”. This is because your USB device containing your personal details and documents should be kept private. It should only be accessible to the owners and to the individuals they want. To ensure such safety and security of your device, one must password protect a USB drive.
- Corrupted files- Also, various threats lead to corrupted files and folders. When you leave your drive unprotected, it may experience harmful variants through which the files and folders may get damaged.
- Protection against external threats- Besides all the above factors, there is another important thing that you should consider. External factors such as malware, viruses, and other harmful threats can also affect the data of your USB device.
The above reasons are the factors for which you should consider having a password-protected USB device for storing all your data into it.
Ways To Protect Your USB With Proper Steps?
Here we have some of the methods through which you can password protect the external hard drive. The ways are as follows-
#1. Password Protection Using BitLocker
BitLocker is one of the best-encrypted tools used to serve special features and other needs to the users. It allows easy encryption of your USB devices to secure them. Here are the steps to password protect a USB drive.
- Start your device and attach the USB device with it.
- Select Windows Explorer, go to the “This PC” option, and right-click on your USB device.
- Here you will get to see multiple options out of them select the one that says- Turn BitLocker on.
- A new window will appear on the screen with different ways through which you can lock your USB drive.
- Select the option to lock it using the password. Create a password you want to set. Confirm it and click next.
- The other steps are to select the methods through which you want to get the recovery pin for an emergency. The recovery pin is used in situations when you forget your password. With the help of a recovery pin, you can get back the access.
- Select the second option- encrypt the entire drive as a part.
- Now, choose the encryption mode. Compatibility mode is the wise choice to get extra security ad then click next.
- Click on the start encrypting option.
- Your device is now password protected. To access the data, double-click the drive, enter the password and you are all set to use it.
#2. Protect The Drive Using VeraCrypt
For users who do not want to use the tools provided by Microsoft or have issues regarding this, can use the Veracrypt software. It has an easy-to-use interface and provides secured encryption of your storage and other devices as well. The steps to password protect USB drive windows 10 using the Veracrypt software are as follows-
- Type Veracrypt in the search box, click on the icon, and launch the application on your device.
- Now click on the Create Volume option, select the “Encrypt a non-system partition/drive” and then click on the “Next” button.
- In the Volume type screen, select the first option as “Standard VeraCrypt volume” followed by the next button.
- Click on the Select drive option and then select your USB drive from the options given below. Click on the OK button and then click Next.
- Now from the displayed results, you need to select the “Encrypt partition in place. On selecting any of the other options displayed on the screen, you may lose your data by overriding. Select the next option. If your USB drive is empty, you need to click on the “Create encrypted volume and format it” followed by the next button.
- In the next window, choose the encryption type along with the hash algorithm. Select from the given options and click Next.
- Select the size of your USB drive and create a password for your drive. Confirm the password by re-entering it.
- Select whether you would be having large files on your device or not.
- A randomizing process will be started. To make it quick, move your cursor on the screen repeatedly until the processing line turns green.
- Now make the format command and let the process be over.
- Add your drive into the Veracrypt and your drive is now protected from unknown threats.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is there any other way to get my USB drive secured without creating a password?
Yes, if you do not want to set the password manually, you can purchase the secured USB drives. They already come with an in-built security system so that the user does not have to secure it manually. Some of the latest USB drives come with fingerprint authentication to prevent them from being misused. They have an ultra-secured password system which is not that easy to hack.
2. Can I get access to my USB drive after forgetting the password that I made last time?
Yes, there is a way to get back access to your drive even after losing or forgetting the password. For this, you will be needing the recovery pin. Follow the below steps to learn how to recover the password. They are as follows-
- Insert your USB drive in the device, double click on it to get the password field.
- In this field, select the “more option” button available there.
- Click on the “enter the recovery pin” option.
- Now, in that field copy-paste the recovery file you had while setting the password.
- Then click on the “unlock” option and the file will be accessible.
3. Which encryption system is used in the secured USB flash drives?
The ready-to-use USB flash drive uses the AES- 256 encryption system to restrict the accessibility of the internal documents stored within the drive. It is a 256-bit key used to protect the files and other data from being hacked.
USB devices are the most portable and easy-to-use devices with an extended list of features. However, using these devices is not that straightforward. It has certain risks associated with it. They do have both pros and cons that a user can experience while using the flash drive on their system. To minimize the risks, we have created a complete guide for you to make things work.
We have shared some of the best-working methods through which you can set passwords to your USB drives. They will no longer be available for every individual out there. Also, you can restrict them from using your data without your consent. Hopefully, this guide has helped you a lot. All the above methods have been tried and tested and you can rely on them. Do let us know your comments and queries in the box below.