- Password Protect USB Drive Bitlocker
Password / recovery key’s needed to unlock your encrypted drive. confirm you store your password and recovery key during a safe and separate place other than your computer.
To avoid data corruption/lost during the encryption process, it’s recommended that a replacement or nearly new device be used for encryption and to not interrupt the encryption process.
Turn on BitLocker To Go to Encrypt Files
- Connect your removable storage device to your computer.
- Go to “Control Panel” and select “BitLocker Drive Encryption”.
- Select the removable storage drive you want to encrypt and then click “Turn on BitLocker”.
- Wait for a while for BitLocker initialization to complete.
- Select “Use a password to unlock the drive” and define your password. Re-type the password to confirm and then click “Next”.
- Select where you want to save the recovery key which is needed to access the drive in case you have forgotten your password. It is NOT recommended to use the “Save to your cloud domain account” option as it requires your desktop PC to join the Microsoft Azure Active Directory which is not currently provisioned. Instead, you are recommended to use the “Save to a file” option, and store the recovery key in a secure place as it is your last resort of unlocking the drive. After saving your recovery key, click “Next”.
- Choose how you want to encrypt the drive. If you are using a new drive, select “Encrypt used disk space only”. If you are using a drive with data, select “Encrypt entire drive”. Then click “Next”.
- Select the encryption mode. If you will use the encrypted drive on older versions of Windows, select “Compatible mode”. If you will only use the drive on Windows 10 machine, select “New encryption mode” which is a better encryption method. Then click “Next”.
- Click “Start encrypting” when ready.
- The encryption process may take some time, depending on various factors including the speed of the storage device, performance of the PC, etc. (Microsoft estimates the encryption speed to be around 500MB/min). Interrupting the process may result in data corruption/lost.
- Click “Close” when the encryption is completed.
- The next time you connect your encrypted drive to the computer, enter your password to unlock the drive.
Use Recovery Key to Unlock the Drive
In case you’ve got forgotten your unlock password or for whatever reasons you can’t access the encrypted drive, you’ll unlock the drive using the recovery key.
- Right-click the encrypted drive from file explorer, then click “Unlock Drive”.
- Click “More options” in the pop-up window.
- Make sure “Automatically unlock on this PC” is checked and click “Enter recovery key”.
- Key in the recovery key and click “Unlock”.
- The drive is unlocked.
Change Unlock Password
- Unlock your encrypted drive with the existing password.
- Go to Control Panel and then select “BitLocker Drive Encryption”.
- Locate your encrypted drive and click “Change password”.
- Key in your old password. Define a new password and re-type it to confirm. Then click “Change password”.
- The password is changed. Click “Close”.