After hours (or more accurately months!) of intense reflection and research blinding yourself on your computer screen, you just made THE discovery that will revolutionize the world and shake the foundations of civilization. With a smile on your face and a head full of dreams, you are about to close your laptop when you hear some strange noises behind you. You raise your head, suddenly taking an anxious look behind you, with cold sweat running down your back, and then realize that this is the cat who is just saying hello and not as you dreaded for a second a spy mandated by all kinds of secret services from greedy enemy countries. Heaving a sigh of relief, you say to yourself that it might be safer to find a way to protect your great discovery against prying eyes and an encryption software like TrueCrypt will certainly do the trick.
TrueCrypt protect your most critical data in an encrypted container file called volume, once created, the volume will act as a virtual disk that simply "mount" via a password. You can then incorporate and view your sensitive files as any local drive on your computer and as soon as you're done, you will just have to "dismount" the volume safely. This way your data will be automatically encrypted and thus find itself away from prying eyes.
These container files can easily be transported on an external media (like a USB key for example) and open on an other computer with TrueCrypt installed. However, as impossible as it is to open without the correct password, they can be removed quite easily. So it is your responsibility to make your container files as "insignificant" as possible by assigning to them the most mundane file extension.
TrueCrypt even added the ability to create encrypted "hidden" volumes inside your container file, allowing you to add an additional layer of security in case of interception of your password by any secret service too intrusive. Type the password of your hidden volume and it is this one that will be mounted automatically.
The application does not stop there and even for the most paranoid among us, you can generate one or more files to replace (or add to) your password as encryption key for your encrypted volumes.
With TrueCrypt, you have at your disposal a very efficient way to protect your data, making it virtually immune to all hacking attempts. And your revolutionary chocolate cake recipe is well protected, you can now turn off your computer with an eased mind and fill the bowl of cat unperturbed.
TrueCrypt is free and available in several languages.
TrueCrypt is a software system for establishing and maintaining an on-the-fly-encrypted drive. On-the-fly encryption means that data are automatically encrypted or decrypted right before they are loaded or saved, without any user intervention. No data stored on an encrypted volume can be read (decrypted) without using the correct password or correct encryption key. The entire file system is encrypted (file names, contents of every file).
WARNING: Using TrueCrypt is not secure as it may contain unfixed security issues