Encrypto: Program for encrypting files under macOS and Windows

Encrypt files with Encrypto

The MacPaw software booth is already through CleanMyMac and I baked the SetApp software subscription grown fond of my heart and today I came across a great tool from them that is also offered free of charge: Encrypto.

Encryption for Mac and Windows PC

While I was in a forum again today, I stumbled upon a question from a reader who was looking for a program with which he could encrypt files on his Mac and then transfer them to an SD card or USB stick to exchange it with a friend who has a Windows PC.

With Encrypto from MacPaw, files and folders can be encrypted and exchanged under macOS and Windows.

With Encrypto from MacPaw, files and folders can be encrypted and exchanged under macOS and Windows.

TrueCrypt discontinued and VeraCrypt too complicated

I'm on the tool with my first research TrueCrypt became aware, but that has been discontinued for years. The project probably offered cross-platform encryption of data carriers, but was then closed. Evil tongues claim that the encryption was too good for the secret services. ;-)

VeraCrypt doesn’t want to install itself if you have not set up OSXFuse on the system beforehand.

VeraCrypt does not want to install itself at all if you have not set up OSXFuse on the system beforehand.

The alternative VeraCrypt I installed it once, but already during the installation the message comes up that an additional software is called OSXFUSE install for VeraCrypt to work. That was again too time-consuming and not really easy enough to be expected of laypeople.

Encrypto from MacPaw: Drag and drop encryption for Mac and Windows

After another quarter of an hour of research, at some point Google hit me with the software Encrypto from MacPaw which obviously exactly meets my needs: A simple tool that can be dragged and dropped with files and folders. The archive is then encrypted and protected with a password, for which you can even include a password hint for the recipient if you do not want to give the partner the password.

If you choose a weak password, the whole AES-256 encryption is of no use.

If you choose a weak password, the whole AES-256 encryption is of no use.

If the password is not entered correctly, the archive remains a heap of data garbage that is provided with AES-265 encryption - so pretty much useless for anyone who gets their hands on it without authorization and does not know what the password is.

Of course, the archive has nothing to oppose a brute force attack, but let's assume that you only want to encrypt medium-important data with it and not the blueprints of Fort Knox.

Since the tool is also available for Windows, you can open the encrypted archive on the PC after installation and save the data from it.

With a double click on the crypto-file the program starts and asks for the password for the archive before the files are decrypted.

The program starts with a double click on the crypto file and asks for the password for the archive before the files are decrypted.

Incidentally, the files that were thrown into Encrypto using drag and drop are retained at their original location and are not changed. The encrypted archive can be sent directly from Encrypto to mail, messages, AirDrop or send the Notes app or just save anywhere. The file extension is always ".crypto".

My conclusion on Encrypto

The handling of Encrypto is really foolproof and the only weak point I see is the choice of the password, where the user might type in an easy one to guess. But that's not a point to chalk up on Encrypto. ;-)

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Important: Format the data carrier in ExFat

So that you can actually read the USB stick or SD card on both systems (Win and Mac), you have to "delete" it in the hard disk utility and select the "ExFat" format.

In the hard disk utility (to be found in Applications> Utilities) you can initialize a disk in ExFat format.

In the hard disk utility (to be found in Applications> Utilities) you can initialize a disk in ExFat format.

A data medium formatted in this way can be read and written to under both macOS and Windows.

Tip: Disk encryption on Macs

If you want to encrypt your data without always having to access a program like Encrypto, you can also use the hard drive utility to format entire USB sticks, SD cards or hard drives in "APFS encrypted" or "Mac OS Extended Journaled, encrypted". A password is requested during setup, which you must always enter in the future if you want to mount the data carrier.

However, due to the file system, such a data carrier cannot be read by Windows computers and is therefore more suitable for people who only use Macs.

However, this type of encryption has the advantage that the data is always encrypted. Even if you unplug the hard drive during operation and plug it into another Mac, the latter first wants to have the password for decryption.

 

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9 comments

  1. Lutz S. says:

    Thanks for the tip, have you already tested the Crytomator?

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Lutz! I've heard of it but haven't had the time to try it out. But cloud-based encryption is definitely interesting too. Maybe there will be an article about it soon. : D

  2. Simon says:

    There are tons of encryption programs that are available for all kinds of different Windows and Unix derivatives. For example Gocryptfs, cryfs, cryptomator, securefs, ... unfortunately all these programs have more or less the problem that Mac-specific functions such as spotlight, tags, icons, file data or just the display of umlauts are more or less well implemented.
    In my opinion the only tool that has full Mac integration is Boxcryptor.
    By the way, there is now also the existing and completely free of the encrypted savings bundle (but only for the Mac :-))

    Without having tested Encryto, I can only say, be careful and check whether what is put in really comes out again, e.g. especially with a jpg that should be imported after a photo, if necessary, it is annoying, because the file date, because this does not exist in other file systems, is set to 1.1.1970.

    VG

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Hello Simon! Thank you for your food for thought. Regarding Umlauts, icons etc. cannot be complained about with Encypto. MacPaw has been making Mac apps for many years and they really look mac-like. Regarding the creation date, I'll test again what Encrypto does with it and report here as an update in the post. VG, Jens

  3. Simon says:

    Good evening Jens - "Creation date" also works, I've tried in the meantime.
    It's a cool tool, but not for encrypting cloud storage.
    If you would like to test something, I could gladly provide my previous documentation as a basis.
    Since I am dependent on the creation date and spotlight tags due to the EagleFiler use, I have to stay with Boxcryptor even after 2 years of searching :-( in addition to the subscription model, the juicy price compared to cloud storage, bothers me the most that you have to register on a server that offers hacking potential again
    VG

    • Sir Apfelot says:

      Class, you are faster than me! : D Yes, Boxcryptor also seems to be a well-rounded affair. I haven't tested that yet. Regarding of the server, I think that they are aware of the danger and have hopefully taken a lot of protective measures against it. : D

  4. Thomas says:

    My favorite is Cryptomator. FUSE is installed on the Mac and everything is done in one go. The installation under Windows is even easier (attention, if you have a 32-bit Windows, then you should get the last 32-version and keep it). There are also clients for Linux, iOS and Android.

    Cryptomator is open source, which always creates a leap of faith for the paranoid people (to whom I sometimes count myself).

    I highly recommend it. Details and downloads can be found https://cryptomator.org/.

    Apart from that, I read the apple blog via RSS (via NEtNewsWire) again and again with great pleasure.

  5. Simon says:

    Cryptomator is great!
    But only if you don't care about spotlight, icons, tags and file birthdates!
    I just never tire of mentioning it here.
    Unfortunately, the Cryptomator team cannot implement this or the Mac user may not be in focus.

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