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HDD encryption keeps failing
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WannaBang Offline
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HDD encryption keeps failing
So this has happened at least 3 times, all with different Samsung or WD hard drives (not SSDs). Not one time after the other, more like every year or so.

It will happen that I plug the HDD into my laptop and it doesn't ask for the password I set up with encryption last time I formatted it. It just mounts itself as if the password had been entered correctly.

Anyone have any idea why this happens and how to fix this?
(This post was last modified: 04-14-2019 04:15 AM by WannaBang.)
04-14-2019 04:15 AM
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joost Offline
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Post: #2
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
Maybe the password is already in the cache?

I think you should ask in another forum. And be more specific. What kind of software are you using? Windows, Mac, Linux? Are you using open source software or those fake crap that come with a drive?

Try Veracrypt. And read the manual.
(This post was last modified: 04-14-2019 07:38 AM by joost.)
04-14-2019 07:34 AM
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WannaBang Offline
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RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
Yeah I should have mentioned - its mac. I used the mac control panel disc utility.
04-14-2019 07:47 AM
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General Stalin Offline
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Post: #4
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
I don't know much about apple's encryption services, I'm sure Google will be able to help you though. I know with Windows you can choose to store your key in your TPM chip or a USB drive, and you can chose to have it password protected or not and it asks for the password prior to booting Windows.
04-14-2019 09:04 AM
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Borges Offline
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RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
I'm not sure what's your setup, so it's hard to tell what's going wrong exactly. But I think neither hardware encryption (some HDDs and SSDs have hardware encryption) nor native OS encryption features (FileVault, BitLocker) are to be trusted - who knows what backdoors they put in? Use VeraCrypt.
(This post was last modified: 04-14-2019 09:53 AM by Borges.)
04-14-2019 09:53 AM
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rapaz12 Offline
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RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
(04-14-2019 07:34 AM)joost Wrote:  Maybe the password is already in the cache?

I think you should ask in another forum. And be more specific. What kind of software are you using? Windows, Mac, Linux? Are you using open source software or those fake crap that come with a drive?

Try Veracrypt. And read the manual.

(04-14-2019 09:53 AM)Borges Wrote:  I'm not sure what's your setup, so it's hard to tell what's going wrong exactly. But I think neither hardware encryption (some HDDs and SSDs have hardware encryption) nor native OS encryption features (FileVault, BitLocker) are to be trusted - who knows what backdoors they put in? Use VeraCrypt.

What's so special about Veracrypt?
04-15-2019 10:21 AM
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TheFinalEpic Offline
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Post: #7
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
Look into VeraCrypt for this sort of thing. You should be able to create a partition that is fully encrypted.

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04-15-2019 11:59 AM
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Borges Offline
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Post: #8
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
(04-15-2019 10:21 AM)rapaz12 Wrote:  What's so special about Veracrypt?

It's open source and AFAIK has been reviewed by independent researchers at least once.
04-15-2019 06:40 PM
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joost Offline
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Post: #9
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
Since it’s a Mac, stick to FileVault unless you think government might want to look into your stuff. Make sure macOS is not set to auto-login.

For more private contents, it’s better to create containers. Use Veracrypt (read the manual, you learn a bunch of stuff) or use encrypted DMGs. They’re quite convenient since it mounts automatically (while asks for the password). DMGs just open in Macs though.

Another important use of containers is that you can upload them to back them up without worrying about companies having access. Use a good and long password and save it in Dropbox (or whatever service) just in case you lose your computer and physical backups.
04-15-2019 08:30 PM
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Guy80 Offline
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Post: #10
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
Sounds like it's passing the creds or wasn't setup properly.

Hidden partition is fun and everything but if you're hiding stuff from the .gov maybe look at bigger picture. Run LUKS too and have other ideas ready.
04-17-2019 07:37 AM
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WannaBang Offline
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Post: #11
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
Hi Joost,

Yeah I created a DMG the size of the HDD itself right from the start. I did this after the HDD encryption failed the first time as a contingency. It is incredibly slow but it is what it is. As you say it is useless for non-mac laptops (I might decide to go back to windows eventually). I used a super long password which I memorised. I will look into Veracrypt as it seems to be the most mentioned app in this thread.
04-17-2019 07:47 AM
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joost Offline
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Post: #12
RE: HDD encryption keeps failing
^^

A container the size of your HD is counterproductive. You can have a small one for documents (personal, legal, medical, etc) and another container for pictures you don’t want to risk going out.

As for anything else, FileVault would do. Hackers won’t have access and you won’t have to worry about performance.

As I said:
- FileVault for the whole HD.
- Small containers for extreme sensitive contents. You just open the containers when needed so the password won’t stay in the cache. No risk of cold-boot attack.
(This post was last modified: 04-17-2019 09:37 AM by joost.)
04-17-2019 09:37 AM
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