Encryption File System is a feature included in Windows 10, which you can use with BitLocker if you want to encrypt your drives and documents. EFS is used to encrypt documents and files and BitLocker is utilized to encrypt the whole disk drive.
How is Encryption File System used to Encrypt Folders and Files
- First, you need to sign in to Windows 10.
- Then press the Windows button and the alphabet ‘E’ together to invoke the File Explorer.
- After that, go to the disk or partition wherever you would like to save the data and would like to encrypt it with EFS.
- Go to the folder and right-click on it then select the Properties option.
- Beneath the General section, select the Advanced tab below the Attributes field.
- Underneath the ‘Advanced Attributes,’ select the Encrypt contents to secure data’ option.
- Select the OK button.
- You should choose the Apply button and pick the ‘’Apply changes to this folder, subfolders and files’ then verify by selecting the OK button.
- Now, choose the prompt screen ‘Back up your file encryption key’ that will show as a notification into the taskbar.
- It guides you to ignore permanently losing access to the encrypted files.
- Beneath the ‘Back up your encryption certificate and key’ section and select one of the applicable options.
- Underneath the ‘Welcome to the Certificate Export Wizard’ section and choose the Next button.
- Below the ‘Export File Format’ section, choose the ‘Personal information Exchange’ then pick the Next button.
- Beneath the Security, set a password, and pick the encryption type, select the Next button.
- Below the ‘Completing the Certificate Export Wizard,’ select the Finish button.
- Then you will view the verification screen ‘The export was successful.’
- Select the OK button.
- Now, invoke the File Explorer and go to the data that you have recently encrypted.
- You will view that each encrypted file has a yellow lock button on the upper right-hand side.
Turn on Other Users to Access the EFS in Windows 10
- Firstly, you should share the user certificate that doesn’t have a reach to the encrypted data.
- After that, sign in to the Windows 10 through the user account.
- Go to the certificate and twice click on it to begin the process of certificate installation.
- Beneath the ‘Welcome to the Certificate Import Wizard,’ select the ‘Current User’ then pick the Next button.
- You should identify the file you would like to import then choose the Next button.
- Input the password then choose the Next button.
- Go to the ‘Automatically select the certificate store based on the type of certificate’ option then choose the Next button.
- Beneath the ‘Completing the Certificate Import Wizard’ option and select the Finish button.
- Then, you will see the verification screen ‘The import was successful.’
- Invoke the File Explorer then go to the location wherever encrypted files are.
- Now, launch the encrypted files. As you should view, User ‘B’ has effectively launched the encrypted text file.
The EFS on Windows 10 is a feature introduced in version 3.0 of NTFS that provides filesystem-level encryption. The technology enables files to be transparently encrypted to protect confidential data from attackers with physical access to the computer. WIkipedia
The author of this post is a Microsoft Office expert and has been working in the technical industry since 2000. As a technical expert, he has written tech blogs, manuals, and reviews for many websites such as office.com/setup.