How to keep your files password protected on Mac

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Date: 1 December 2021

A woman places her hands on her macOS device to protect it

If you use a Mac, it's very likely there are files and documents you want to protect and keep private; other people shouldn't have access to your sensitive information. And with the escalating number of cyberattacks, it's imperative that you take steps to keep them secure.

The simplest method to secure your files is to use a virtual private network (VPN). By using a VPN, you'll keep yourself protected when browsing the internet. So, if you happen to use a Mac, it's better to have a top quality VPN for MacOS.

While the VPN is protect you from the outside, what can you do about the inside? Even if you're offline, there's still a chance your laptop could be opened without your knowledge. Unprotected files and documents can let some people access your device and do harm. It's sensible to use passwords to protect important folders or files to reduce the risks.

Fortunately, Mac offers a feature that works in a similar way. It will compress a folder and protect it with a password. But you need to complete a few steps to implement it.

With this in mind, we want to share how to keep your files protected with password management on Mac.

Protected zip file

As mentioned above, macOS comes with a lot of handy features. Mainly, they're installed to keep your data protected. That said, you need to set them up since they're not default settings.

You can easily compress a folder but giving it a specific password can't be done just like that. Here's how to set it up:

  1. First, turn on your Mac. Make any folder in any location you want
  2. Then, pick all the important files you want to protect and put them all into that particular folder
  3. Find the feature called 'Spotlight' and find 'Terminal'.
  4. After it opens, enter these command sets to change the directory: “cd ~/Desktop/TargetFolder.” *remove the “
  5. Type and see whether the files are now contained within the same location
  6. Enter these commands: “zip -er FilnameYouWant.zip FileORFolderNameToCompress”
  7. Then, type the passwords
  8. After this is complete, you may notice a protected zip file in the same directory.
  9. Now double click it, and use the passwords to open

You can now decide whether to send the Zip folder via email or direct sharing. The Zip file can be opened only with a password. Even when you try to open it on a different devices, the password will remain the same.

How to turn a folder into a protected drive

If the above method isn't quite what you're looking for, there's another strategy you can use. The other way is to mount the folder as a protected device. It's possible to do this in macOS. Again, there are several steps involved.

The basic steps are to create a disk image but with a set password. Since the folder is mounted as a drive, you can freely share it with anyone while it's still protected. However, there are some differences compared to the Zip file. You don't need to extract the folder to open the file, allowing users to see the files right away.

If you're handling sensitive data, mounting a folder as a protected drive could be your best option. Here's how to do it:

  1. First, make a folder and put your files there.
  2. Find the Disk Utility App.
  3. Click the File option.
  4. Select New Image, then Image from Folder.
  5. Select the previously created folder.
  6. Add the disk name on the next window.
  7. Set the location.
  8. Click Encryption > 128-bit Encryption.
  9. Select Image Format, then select the format most suited to your situation.
  10. Save.
  11. Close the Disk Utility, and go to the directory.
  12. Select the disk image that served in .dmg format, and double click it.
  13. Enter the password to open.
  14. You should see the mounted drive on the sidebar.
  15. Collect the files you saved earlier and click Unmount button to remove the access.

Now that the disk image file has been created properly, you can share it with anyone you wish. Since it's encrypted, the user will always need to enter the correct password to open. It can't be opened with any tools unless a valid password is entered.

Copyright 2021. Featured post made possible by Rene Mulyandari.

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