Encrypting Your Files


Nasir's computer was stolen and the results of his investigation on AGA and the story he was writing were unencrypted. He is worried that his sources may become compromised. If the documents had been encrypted then no one would be able to access them.


What is encryption?

Encryption is the process of scrambling information so that no one can read or understand it. The only way to decipher the information – convert it into a readable format – would be with an encryption key. Many good open-source (free) and paid encryption tools are on the Internet.

For this lesson, we would show you how to use VeraCrypt software. It’s easy, free, and works on many platforms.

Creating a VeraCrypt container

Now, we’ll tell you how to create, mount, and use a VeraCrypt volume. There’s also a lot of information in the other parts of this manual.  

Step 1: Download and install VeraCrypt. Then launch it by double-clicking the file VeraCrypt.exe or by clicking the VeraCrypt shortcut in your Windows Start menu. When the window appears, click Create Volume.

Step 2: After this, the VeraCrypt Volume Creation Wizard window will appear. Here, you have to choose where you want to create the VeraCrypt     volume. You can put it in a file – also called a container – in a disk partition, or a drive. Here, we will use the first choice.


Step 3:  Here, you must select either a standard or hidden VeraCrypt volume. These instructions will use the first choice.

Step 4: Next, you must choose the location of the VeraCrypt volume (file container). A VeraCrypt container is just like any other file and can be moved or deleted. Please choose a filename in the following step.

Step 5: Click Select File choose where you want the file saved, and pick a name for the file. Do not select an already existing file as VeraCrypt will delete it and replace it with a new VeraCrypt container.

Click Save. The file selector window should disappear.

Step 6: Here you can choose an encryption algorithm and a hash algorithm for the volume. If you don’t know what these mean, use the default settings and click Next. (To learn more, read the chapters Encryption Algorithms and Hash Algorithms)


Here we selected the size of our VeraCrypt container as 250 megabytes but you can choose another size. Click next.

Step 7: This is one of the most important steps. Here you have to choose a good volume password. Carefully read the information in the Wizard window about how to choose a good password.


Type the password in the first input field. Then re-type it in the input field below the first one and click Next.

Step 8: Move your mouse as randomly as possible within the Volume Creation Wizard window at least until the randomness indicator becomes green. The longer you move the mouse, the better, so do it for at least 30 seconds. This increases the cryptographic strength of the encryption keys, which increases security.

Click Format.

Step 9: Volume creation will begin. VeraCrypt will create a file called My Volume in the folder F:\Data\ from Step 6. This will be a VeraCrypt container containing the encrypted VeraCrypt volume. The duration of the volume creation depends on the size of the volume. When it finishes, the following dialog box will appear:


We have just successfully created a VeraCrypt volume (file container). In the VeraCrypt Volume Creation Wizard window, click Exit.


Next, we will mount the volume we just created. Return to the main VeraCrypt window, which should still be open. If it isn’t, repeat Step 1 to launch VeraCrypt and then continue from the next step

Step 10:   Select a drive from the list. The container will be mounted to this drive.


Note: Here, we chose the drive letter M, but you can choose another.

Step 11: Click Select File.


Step 12: In the main window, click Mount. A password prompt dialog window will appear


Type the password you selected in the password input field.


Step 13: Select the PRF algorithm that was used when the volume was created (SHA-512 is the default PRF). If you don’t remember,  leave it on “autodetection,” but the mounting process will take longer. After entering the password, click OK.

VeraCrypt will now attempt to mount the volume. If the password is incorrect, VeraCrypt will notify you and you will need to type it again and click OK. If the password is correct, the volume will be mounted.



Congratulations! You have just successfully mounted the container as a virtual disk M:

Continue the conversation.

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Summary steps

  • Download Veracrypt.
  • Create volume.
  • Select standard veracrypt volume.
  • Choose location of file.
  • Save.