If you are looking for a secure alternative to the traditional filing cabinet, or if you need a convenient, portable means to transport secure documents, a secure USB drive may be for you!

Roughly thumb-sized, a USB drive is an easy way to store everything from your tax returns to photographs to work-related materials. To access, remove or rewrite your files, you simply plug the USB device into your computer. Easy enough, right?

The only catch with USB drives is the physical security of it. Because of its size, it can be easily misplaced, and without encryption protection, the files can be accessed by anyone with a computer. To optimally protect your USB drives, install encryption software prior to adding any files, remove the USB from the computer when you are done using it, then ensure it is kept in a secure location. The encryption software will prompt you to assign a password to the drive when you download it, so make sure it’s something easy for you to remember but hard for anyone else to guess. Going forward, each time you access the drive you will be required to enter that password.

It is also recommended that you store your personal files on a separate USB drive than you may store any files related to your work. In the event a USB is lost or compromised, having various USB drives can minimize any fallout.