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Beginners Guides: Decrypting Document & File Passwords

Beginners Guides: Decrypting Document & File Passwords - PCSTATS
Abstract: As PCSTATS illustrates in this article, a lot of the methods of protection used by common software packages are far from invulnerable.
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: PCSTATS Feb 19 2007   Mike Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Beginners Guides > PCSTATS

Using ABI-Coder to Encrypt

First install and run the program.The two text bars ('key' and 'confirm') in the top left corner are where you should enter the password you wish to use. ABI-Coder requires a minimum of 8 characters for a password.

To encrypt a file or files, navigate to the file using the explorer window, ensure that you have entered a password as written above, then click the 'encrypt' button. Your file will be encrypted and will require a copy of ABI-Coder and your password in order to be opened successfully.

To decrypt a file, perform the above steps on an encrypted file and use the 'decrypt' button.

To create a self-decrypting file for transmission to users that may not have or want the ABI-Coder program, highlight the file you wish to encrypt, then press CTRL+S. Select the name of the file that will be created and enter the password it will use then hit 'create self decrypting file.' Double clicking on this file will bring up a password prompt which will decrypt the file if the password is correctly entered.

You can change the level of encryption you wish to use by going to the 'options' menu and choosing from one of the three methods available.

Both of the above programs encrypt your data both on your system and in transit over the Internet, and as such can be considered very effective means of protecting your digital property.

If you are using Windows XP or 2000, also consider using the built in Encrypting File System (EFS) which uses the identity of an individual computer user as its key, instead of a password. While EFS is not useful for transferring data to other computers, it is a valuable tool for securing data on your system. See our encryption and online privacy guide for more details on enabling EFS.

Recovering deleted documents

What if password protection is not your problem, but rather the fact that your day's work has just disappeared from your documents folder AND your recycling bin due to the overzealous key pressing of your five-year old? Don't panic yet. Chances are you can get your data back rather easily. Try one of the following free programs.

PC-Inspector's file recovery software is an excellent freeware program for recovering accidentally deleted files. It does have one major limitation, the fact that it does not work on NTFS partitions (the default file system for XP Professional and windows 2000)

To use PC-Inspector:

First, download and install the program. Open up PC-Inspector and select the 'recover deleted files' icon. The program will pause while it enumerates the drives attached to your system.

Choose the logical drive letter the deleted files were located on.

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Contents of Article: PCSTATS
 Pg 1.  Beginners Guides: Decrypting Document & File Passwords
 Pg 2.  Recovering Passwords to Word, Excel and Office files
 Pg 3.  Guaword and Cracking ZIP File Passwords
 Pg 4.  Recovering Passwords to Adobe PDF files
 Pg 5.  Protecting documents with 3rdparty encryption
 Pg 6.  — Using ABI-Coder to Encrypt
 Pg 7.  Restoration Deleted File Recovery

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