Ask Leo: How Can I Keep My Laptop Data Secure?


By Leo Notenboom

I travel a lot, and have sensitive data on the laptop I take with me that I
need as part of my job. But I’m in fear of losing the laptop and that this data
will fall into the wrong hands. What do you suggest?

I know how you feel. I also have sensitive information on my laptop that I
would prefer not to fall into the wrong hands. I can handle losing the laptop,
but thinking about the data in the wrong hands … well … that would be

I do have a solution that I’ve been using for several years now, and it
turns out to be fairly easy, secure, and free.

Now, naturally, you can encrypt your data using various archiving tools that
allow you to assign the resulting file a password. The problem is that many are
easy to crack, and to be honest, it’s a hassle; in order to encrypt a file you
have to take care to place it in the archive and erase unencrypted copies, and
in order to use a file you need to extract it from the archive.

What Free, Open Source encryption tool does Leo use?.

[This post is excerpted with Leo’s permission from his Ask Leo blog.]

Leo Notenboom has been involved in the tech industry for nearly 30 years. After retiring from an 18 year career as a Microsoft Software Engineer Leo went on to create Ask Leo!, a free web site where he answers real questions from ordinary computer users.

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One thought on “Ask Leo: How Can I Keep My Laptop Data Secure?

  1. My wife has that probmel too. So what does she to hackle this nasty problem. Have a bacup system at your office and send securly trough a VPN line your stuff daily to that server backup. Or have a seperate backup mobile usb harddisk with you, please loose not that too, mostly you won’t, that’s all. Hav fun, no misery.

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