With the increasing concerns related to data security and privacy issues across many industries, the legal industry has been forced to implement security around the transfer of electronic discovery collected in litigation matters. Hard drives, thumb drives and DVDs alike, many litigation support professionals are encrypting the data prior to transfer.
The government contractors in the DC area began using this technology years ago. The “Big 4” accounting firms are using this technology. Some corporate clients are insisting that their data be encrypted before transfer. It has even reached outside the electronic discovery arena within law firms because our clients are performing security audits and mandating that we protect their data while in our possession as we provide their legal services.
One of the tools that is easy to implement and widely adopted is the use of TrueCrypt software. Wikipedia refers to it as “a free software application used for on-the-fly encryption (OTFE).”
Basically, the software is used to create a “virtual disk” that is encrypted and assigned a password of your choosing. There are a number of steps and various options to choose from in creating the virtual disk. Using TrueCrypt, the virtual disk is mounted to a drive letter that is available. From there, it is just a matter of copying the data into the virtual disk and dismounting the disk when complete.
In order for the receiving party to view the contents, they must have the TrueCrypt software installed and knowledge of the password that was assigned to the volume.
My advice is to spend time practicing how to use TrueCrypt so that are you prepared when the time comes. Have you had an opportunity to use TrueCrypt yet?