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Windows Thread, password protect a single file in Technical; I've got a word document with very sensitive data in it. I know I can add a password in word ...
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    rocknrollstar's Avatar
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    password protect a single file

    I've got a word document with very sensitive data in it. I know I can add a password in word to protect it, but also know that this isn't very fool proof.

    What's the best way to protect my file from being read, preferably for free? Can use external programs! Obviously the need for a password to open it is required.

    Thanks in advance.

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    SC-UK's Avatar
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    Is putting it inside a password protected zip file any better security wise than adding the password through word itself?

    Not sure on this one!

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    Quote Originally Posted by SC-UK View Post
    Is putting it inside a password protected zip file any better security wise than adding the password through word itself?

    Not sure on this one!
    zip file is better security wise but still breakable - I would put it in a directory which only you have permissions / access rights to and deny everyone else permissions to it.

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    How about a memory stick - something like the Lexar which comes with security software built in?

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    mac_shinobi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by speckytecky View Post
    How about a memory stick - something like the Lexar which comes with security software built in?
    use true crypt on a memory stick in traveller mode

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    rocknrollstar's Avatar
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    So basically using something like 7-zip would be best then?

    I've read about the file permission idea, maybe I'll use that as well!

    Thanks for your help.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    I would password protect the Word file, remove the file extension, move it to a location where strict permissons have been set and ZIP and/or WinRAR the file.

    I'm quite sure all this would keep someone quite busy

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    rocknrollstar's Avatar
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    Thanks, will give that a go.

    I'll have to write instructions to the person I want to give the document to so that they are able to actually get and read the file. May write that by hand and send it through the post, although it probably won't get there :0)

    Perhaps there isn't a perfect security system...

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    Which version of Word? Versions before 2007 were not very secure but 2007 is pretty secure (some details on this website - How safe is Word 2007 encryption?)

    What kind of data is it? Does it need to be edited? Who are you trying to stop getting hold of it?

    If it does need to be edited then having lots of layers is probably counter-productive - people won't bother because it's too difficult. Even if it's only going to be read then you run the risk that the user will just copy the data somewhere else.

    If this is a list of "in emergency" details which you don't expect to ever be read then you can safely use lots of layers as long as you've got clear docs about how to unwrap the onion :-)

    Finally, it may be overkill, but Windows Server 2003 Rights Management Services might be worth a look. Using this, you can specify who's allowed to open a file and, having opened it, what they can do with it (so, for example, you can open the file and read its contents on screen but you can't forward it to someone else, can't copy/paste from it and so on)

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    rocknrollstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post
    Which version of Word? Versions before 2007 were not very secure but 2007 is pretty secure (some details on this website - How safe is Word 2007 encryption?)

    What kind of data is it? Does it need to be edited? Who are you trying to stop getting hold of it?

    If it does need to be edited then having lots of layers is probably counter-productive - people won't bother because it's too difficult. Even if it's only going to be read then you run the risk that the user will just copy the data somewhere else.

    If this is a list of "in emergency" details which you don't expect to ever be read then you can safely use lots of layers as long as you've got clear docs about how to unwrap the onion :-)

    Finally, it may be overkill, but Windows Server 2003 Rights Management Services might be worth a look. Using this, you can specify who's allowed to open a file and, having opened it, what they can do with it (so, for example, you can open the file and read its contents on screen but you can't forward it to someone else, can't copy/paste from it and so on)
    Thanks Steve. We've got 2003 unfortunately. The data is simply text in a word document, not likely to be edited soon. It is as you say- emergency info. I'm kind of thinking that if I were to move on at my current school, or got run over, then the IT would be a bit of a mystery for the next person.

    The other issue is that we have a single teacher account, and all teachers use that account. hence the My Documents is a nice place to save EVERYTHING! However, staff at school are pretty organised, so it's not too bad.

    Cheers.

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    If it's emergency info then as well as having an electronic copy, it's a good idea to have a properly sealed, signed, etc hard copy somewhere in a fire resistant safe away from the main school network.

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    You could use something along the lines of Axcrypt. I believe there's a portable version as well.

    If you're really paranoid use a password on the file, zip it with a password and then use an encryption proggy like Axcrypt or Trucrypt. Different passwords of course - extra layers of protection.

    HBJB

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Heebeejeebee View Post
    You could use something along the lines of Axcrypt. I believe there's a portable version as well.

    If you're really paranoid use a password on the file, zip it with a password and then use an encryption proggy like Axcrypt or Trucrypt. Different passwords of course - extra layers of protection.

    HBJB
    I would do that as well as the above mentioned file ext change and permissions on the directory in question

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    rocknrollstar (29th July 2009)

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    Another vote for truecrypt.

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    rocknrollstar (30th July 2009)

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    Password the file
    Zip the file
    Password the zip file
    put zip file on truecrypt USB stick
    encrypt USB stick

    Works for me, people are baffled as to why I do it like that but its for security purposes that they dont get there hands on the data on there!

  26. Thanks to featured_spectre from:

    rocknrollstar (30th July 2009)



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