Encrypting files and folders is a way to protect files and folders from unwanted access. The encrypted files and folders are protected even if the hard drive is removed from the original computer and attached to another one. Encryption is the strongest safety to your information provided by Windows.
Encrypt A File Or Folder
It’s very easy to encrypt a file in Windows 7.
To encrypt a file, right click the file and select Properties.
In the General Tab, select Advanced
Check the checkbox “Encrypt contents to secure data”
This will make the file encrypted.
Encrypted files can only be opened on the computer on which it was encrypted or by using the encryption key. I will tell you later how to generate and export the encryption key.
Decrypt A File Or Folder
Decrypting a file is the exact reverse of encrypting it.
In the File properties, uncheck the checkbox “Encrypt contents to secure data”
Backup The Encryption Key
Since encrypted content can’t be recovered in any way without the encryption key, it is important to backup the encryption key in a safe place. In order to backup the encryption key go to Run -> certmgr.msc
In the Certificate manager, go to Personal -> Certificates
Find the certificates that are Encrypting File System in Intended Purposes.
Backup all the certificates of Encrypting File System.
You can also check out 14 free tools to encrypt and decrypt files in Windows.