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Different encryption methods are implemented for security reasons to prevent the access of sensitive information and two examples of such methods include computer encryption programs, the Bitlocker and the VeraCrypt programs. This study compares the security levels of these two products taking into account the ease of acquisition and the corresponding security benefits of using the products.
This encryption program is developed and provided by the Microsoft Corporation and built into the Windows Operating Systems of Win 7, 8, 10, Ultimate, and Enterprise versions. The application of the program is to encrypt contents of entire disk. It is also useful in the encryption of partitions of a certain disk allowing only the needed files rather than the entire disk (Henry, para. 3).
With reference to security of the application, the adaptability of the software is automatic for anyone running any of the mentioned versions of windows and allows for quick encryption as it takes a few steps to set it up. The ease of assessing and activating makes it useful for quick security concerns. The fact that one has to acquire and set it up for using, some users of Windows platform just use the built in Bitlocker if the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) technology constraint is not identified within a motherboard of a target computing platform (Henry, para. 4 & 9).
The VeraCrypt is an Open-Source program which can be used across operating platforms. Like the Bitlocker, the VeraCrypt can be used for the encryption of full volumes of parts and specific files. In terms of acquisition, the program is a standalone open source code which is free of charge unlike the Bitlocker whose functionality is rooted to the Windows platform (Henry, para. 5). The Pro and Enterprise versions of Windows platform are only obtainable by buying the operating systems but the availability of the veraCrypt program for free and in open-source license allow it to be coded to suit the requirements of various platforms including LINUX. Thus, in availability terms, VeraCrypt is easier to acquire and providing more functions than the Bitlocker (Henry, para. 5).
TPM is a concept and principle in the encryption programs world and allows for some encryption software to identify the TPM prior to installation. Bitlocker does not support this feature which allows modern computers to have a higher security level (Bajikar, p. 6-10). Since VeraCrypt can be tweaked to fit the requirements of various operating systems and motherboards. The inability for Bitlocker to support the TPM technology makes the program non-expandable beyond windows. However, as earlier identified that VerCrypt is much difficulty to acquire due to is set-up process, it is more securely powerful in that it provides a user with the option of encrypting the operating system given it offers the alternative of creating decoy operating system preventing the decryption of the data (Henry, para. 4).
Bitlocker is much difficulty to acquire especially if one is not willing to spend money buying the OS which is integrated with the program. This, therefore indicates that some specific conditions prevent Bitlocker from being considered a reliable encryption program as it cannot be used in some platforms other than Windows. On the other hand, the use of VeraCrypt is difficulty in the setup process but allows for more flexible use and increased security expecially in the creation of decoy operating systems preventing access to data. However, for increased security, using both the VeraCrypt and Bitlocker is preferred.
- Henry, Allan. Windows Encryption Showdown: VeraCrypt vs Bitlocker. Retrieved Online https://lifehacker.com/windows-encryption-showdown-veracrypt-vs-bitlocker-1777855025. 2016, Web.
- Bajikar, Sundeep. “Trusted platform module (tpm) based security on notebook pcs-white paper.” Mobile Platforms Group Intel Corporation (2002): 1-20.