With so many sensitive files being stored on our hard drives, keeping our data protected should be the first priority on our computers. Despite this, most users rarely have any kind of encryption between potential thieves and their files. Any sensitive data can be easily accessed if a computer is lost or stolen, but what can users do to solve this problem?
Knox for Mac is made by AgileBits, the same company that created 1Password, and it allows you to create various ‘vaults’, which are password protected and encrypted, allowing you to drop in any file that you want to securely store. The concept is fairly simple, but how does it stack up in real life use?
Instead of taking up space sitting on your dock, Knox is accessible through your menu bar at the top of the screen. When you’re getting started, you can simply click this icon and choose to create a new vault. This will take you to a simple window where you can give your vault a name and set a password for it. If you don’t want to become too involved in the advanced options you can leave it there, but for those users who wish to know what kind of encryption will be used and how big the vault should be, there is an advanced options pane here also. When you’re done, simply click on create and your vault will be set up.
When a vault is mounted, you can view, add or remove anything that it contains without requiring a password. However, if the vault is un-mounted and you wish to access its contents then you will have to type the password that you set it up with to access your data. Without this, you can’t access the vault at all, making it very secure for sensitive files that you don’t want prying eyes to see. The beauty of Knox is that it behaves as any other folder would once it’s been mounted. You can simply open it and use anything within it without worrying about safety once you’re done.
All things considered, whether you’re an individual looking to protect a few bank records or a corporation protecting trade secrets, the price point of Knox makes it affordable for both markets and it doesn’t disappoint on security. Despite its imperfections, the program is well worth the $35 (just over £20) asking price, and there is a free trial available to download too.