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Can I encrypt my my hard drive myself?

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We wouldn't advise it. Encryption is a complex process that involves scrambling data in such a way that it can only be unscrambled with a special key that you create as part of the encryption process. If you lose that key, your data is likely gone for good. An experienced computer technician can handle the encryption and ensure that there is fall-back way to access your data if you lose the key.