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Bitlocker definition

BitLocker refers to encryption software developed by Microsoft and included with most Windows operating systems. BitLocker uses AES encryption to encrypt the computer’s hard drive including the operating system and all its files.

The history of Bitlocker

BitLocker was introduced in 2004 as a part of Microsoft Next-Generation Secure Computing Base (NGSCB) architecture, designed to improve the security of the Windows operating system. BitLocker was created to protect the information on the device, especially if that device can be lost.

BitLocker was first included with Windows Vista and has been improved upon in every subsequent Windows version. For example, in Windows 10, the users can change the BitLocker encryption method and cipher.

BitLocker best practices

Microsoft recommends configuring BitLocker on a computer with TPM (Trusted Platform Module) of at least 1.2 and a Trusted Computing Group (TCG)-compliant BIOS or UEFI firmware as well as a PIN. This configuration will prevent an attacker with physical access to the device from starting the computer.

Drawbacks of BitLocker

  • Without suitable hardware and proper configuration, BitLocker can be hacked.
  • BitLocker encrypts the drive when the device is shut off. It does not protect files from users on a shared device.