bcrypt – A Good File Encryption Tool
Bcrypt is a cross platform file encryption tool that uses the Blowfish encryption algorithm. One of the chief advantages of using bcrypt (apart from the security aspect) is that it runs on a wide variety of OS platforms and hardware architectures. This includes Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, BSD, HP-UX etc. This means, you can encrypt the file in say Linux, and then move the encrypted file to a machine running Windows and decrypt the file over there.
Using Bcrypt to encrypt your files is far better than paying for an encryption software.
If you are running a Linux distribution, chances are bcrypt is already available in your package repository. For instance, in Ubuntu, you install
bcrypt as follows :
$ sudo apt-get install bcrypt
Windows users can download a pre-compiled binary of bcrypt encryption tool from its official website.
It is also possible to compile bcrypt from source as it is an open source software released under GNU/GPL.
Using bcrypt to encrypt your files is quite easy. Here is how you do it.
To encrypt a file
Let’s encrypt a file named
bcrypt. Open a terminal and move to the directory containing the
test.txt file. Now enter the command as follows :
$ bcrypt test.txt Encryption key:Key must be at least 8 characters Encryption key: ********** Again: **********
What happens :
bcrypt asks you to enter a password (Encryption key) which should be at least 8 characters long. You have to enter the same password twice. Once that is done,
bcrypt will compress and encrypt the file using Blowfish encryption.
At the same time, it overwrites the original file and deletes it, making it impossible to retrieve the file through other means.
The encrypted file will have the extension
.bfe. And the encrypted file
test.txt.bfe will be saved in the same folder.
Note: If you wish
bcrypt to leave the original file intact while encrypting, you can use the
-r switch as shown below :
$ bcrypt -r test.txt
To decrypt a file
Now to decrypt the already encrypted file “test.txt.bfe” is also simple.
$ bcrypt test.txt.bfe Encryption key: **********
And your file
test.txt is restored to its original unencrypted form.
bcrypt is considered to be a very very secure mode of file encryption. If you doubt my words, do read this interesting article which explains why you should use
bcrypt to encrypt your files.
Using bcrypt should also save you from spending lots of money on a professional file encryption software.