How to Password Protect Notes and Secrets

Resign yourself. By now Clara, your nosy little sister, knows by heart all the notes saved on the USB stick that you had carelessly left on your desk and even those contained in the sub-folder of the sub-folder of the documents sub-folder. Yeah… he found those too!

I think you absolutely have to run for cover protecting notes and secrets with passwords, so as to avoid a similar episode from happening again. How do you say? Are you very unfamiliar with technology and are afraid of not being able to complete such a feat? Come on, there is no need to get so depressed! If you want I can help you understand how to encrypt the notes you have saved on your PC or those that are present on your mobile devices.

So, would you like to get involved and learn more about the topic? Yup? Fantastic! I would say, therefore, not to waste any more precious time in small talk and to immediately take action. Make yourself comfortable, take your time to concentrate on reading the next paragraphs and, more importantly, put into practice the "tips" I will give you. I just have to wish you good reading and, above all, good work!

Evernote (Windows / MacOS / Online / Android / IOS)

One of the first solutions I recommend you try for password protect clipboard è Evernote, a famous program for creating notes (also available online and in the form of an app for Android and iOS) that can be used after free registration, thanks to which it is possible to synchronize your notes on multiple devices.

Before explaining how Evernote works in detail, I would like to make a couple of clarifications: the first is that the free version of the service limits the synchronization of data to two devices only and does not allow you to access the notes offline from mobile (to know all the other differences between the free version of the service and the paid version, click here), the other is that the note encryption function is only available in the desktop version of Evernote and not in its Web and mobile versions.

Is everything clear so far? Perfect. To download Evernote, connected to its official website, click on the item Download the app (top left) and wait for the download of the program installation file to complete. Up Windows, open the file .exe just downloaded, click on the button Yes, check the item I accept the terms of the license agreement e pigia prima sul pulsating Install and then Ends.

Su MacOSinstead, open the file .dmg that you downloaded from the program website, click on the button Agree and then drag the Evernote icon into the folder Applications of macOS. Then right click on the Evernote icon and select the item apri from the menu that opens to "bypass" the restrictions that Apple applies to software from non-certified developers.

As soon as you have installed and started Evernote on your computer, sign up for the service using your address e-mail or your account Google (for more information on how to register on Evernote, read the in-depth study I just linked to). If you already have an account, expand the menu I already have an account and log in with your access data.

Once logged in, open the note you want to password protect and select the portion of text you want to encrypt. Then right click on the text you have selected, select the item Encrypt Selected Text ... from the menu that opens and, in the box Note encryption, fill in the text fields located at the top by entering twice the password with which to protect the note. Since Evernote doesn't keep a copy of the password, it also sets the suggestion to remember it more easily by filling in the text field located below and then pressing the button OK per salvare I modified it.

If all went well, the text of the note you have decided to make "secret" is characterized by a zipper with padlock. To view the contents of the note, click on the symbol padlock, type the password you set in the text field Enter passphrase to decrypt and presses the button OK. As if by "magic" you will be able to view the hidden content of the note again. Easier than that ?!

OneNote (Windows/macOS/Android/iOS)

OneNote, the famous program to create and manage notes developed by Microsoft, offers the possibility to encrypt your notes in an easy and fast way. Of course I am referring to the version included in the Office 2016 package of the program and not to the free app for Windows 10 which, for reasons that are quite understandable, does not allow you to take advantage of this advanced feature. If you have not yet purchased the Microsoft Office package, you can try the programs included within it for free for 30 days (including OneNote), as I have already explained to you in another tutorial.

To password protect notes on OneNote, start the program on your computer, right click on the tab of the section containing the notes you want to encrypt and select the item Protect section with password ... which is marked with the symbol del padlock.

In the task pane Password protection that opens on the right, click on the button Set password and, in the dialog box Password protection, type the password you want to protect the clipboard with in the box Enter the password. At this point, type the password again in the box Confirm password and presses the button OK.

Please choose your password carefully and keep it in a safe place, because if you lose it you will not be able to follow any password recovery procedure and you may no longer be able to access the encrypted notes. Understood?

Note (macOS / IOS)

You use a Poppy? You can protect your notes using the application Notes, which is present "standard" on macOS. To encrypt your notes, start the application in question, locate the note you want to protect, right-click on it and select the item Protect note from the menu that opens. Then type in the password you want to protect the note with, click on the button OK And that's it.

The functionality I have just described to you is also available for the Note version present on the devices iOS. After starting the Notes app on your device, open one of the notes you want to protect by tapping on its name, then presses the button Share (l'icona della arrow inside the square) and its voice Protect note (l'icona del closed padlock). Finally, enter one in the appropriate text fields password it's a suggestion to remember it and presses on the voice end per portare to finish l'operazione.

Other Useful Solutions

Didn't the solutions I mentioned in the previous paragraphs satisfy you? Well, then take a look at the programs listed below - they are designed to protect files of all kinds, but they may also be useful for protecting your notes. Make good use of it!

VeraCrypt (Windows / MacOS / Linux)

VeraCrypt is free and open source software (available for Windows, macOS and Linux) that allows you to easily create encrypted volumes (therefore password protected) to be “mounted” and “disassembled” if necessary, just as if they were pendrive or external disks.

To download VeraCrypt on your PC, first connect to the program download page and then click on the link VeraCrypt Setup x.xx.exe attached to the logo of Windows. When the download is complete, start the file .exe you just downloaded, click on the button Yes and follow the wizard to complete the software installation: check the box I accept the license terms, pig sul sul bottone Next twice consecutively and then click on the buttons install, OK, Finish No.

After installing and starting VeraCrypt, customize the interface language: click on the item Language… present in the menu Settings, select one of the languages ​​available (eg. Italian) and then presses the button OK.

Now you are ready to start creating the encrypted volume in which you can save all the files and notes you want to keep away from nosy friends, relatives and colleagues. Then click on the button Create a volume…, check the item Create a crypto file (which actually should already be selected by default), click the button forward, select the voice Volume VeraCrypt standard and then click again forward.

Now, click on the button Select file ..., select the folder where you want to save your encrypted volume, type its name in the text box and click the buttons Saveforward. After that it leaves the default settings related to the encoding and confusion algorithm (respectively BEA SHA-512) and then presses the button forward.

Continue with the creation of the encrypted volume by selecting the maximum size to assign to it. Then select the amount of memory by typing it in the appropriate text field (eg. 30), choose the unit of measurement you prefer (ex. GB) and then click on the button forward.

We're almost there: to complete the creation of the encrypted volume, you just have to set the password to protect it and then select the file system that best suits your needs. Therefore, create the password with which to encrypt your book (if you want advice on how to create secure passwords, consult the guide I dedicated to the topic), enter it in the text fields PasswordConfirmation and then presses the button forward.

Then choose the file system that seems best suited to your needs (eg. NFTS, if you need to archive very large files; FAT: if you don't need to store very large files and you have no problem complying with the 4GB per file limit or exFAT to be able to use the volume on both Windows and macOS without having to face the limit of 4GB per file), click the button Format and finally, presses the buttons OK ed Logout.

Did you see that it wasn't complicated at all to create an encrypted volume? Now all you have to do is access it by selecting one of the drive letters among those indicated in the main VeraCrypt window (eg. A:, B:, G:, etc.), click on the button Select file ... located at the bottom right and choose the encrypted archive you created. Then click on the button Monta, type the password you set when creating the volume in the text field Password and presses the button OK.

If you entered the correct password, you should see the drive icon created with VeraCrypt in the section What PCcomputer o Computer resources (based on the version of Windows installed on your PC). Double clicking on the drive letter which represents your volume, you can therefore manage the files inside it exactly as you would with a pendrive or an external disk.

I recommend, every time you finish working on the data in your encrypted volume, remember to "unmount" it by going to the main VeraCrypt window, selecting the drive letter representing the volume itself and then clicking on the button Disassemble.

I use a Poppy? Then know that before installing VeraCrypt you need to download FUSE, a component required to make VeraCrypt work on macOS.

To download FUSE, go to its download page and click on the icon FUSE for macOS xxx placed at the top. When the download is complete, open the file you obtained, double-click the icon FUSE for macOS, click here Continue three consecutive times and then on Accept, ContinueInstall. Type your Mac password as soon as you are prompted, click the button Install software and finish the setup by pressing the buttons OKOpen Security & Privacy System PreferencesAllowClose e Move.

Now you can install VeraCrypt on your Mac: connected, then, to the official website of the program, click on the link VeraCrypt_x.xx.dmg and, when the download is complete, open the file you just downloaded. Next, double click on the icon VeraCrypt_Installer.pkg, double click on the button below Continue and then Accept Install. Finally, type in the Mac administration password and press the buttons Install software, Close e Move.

Now you can start VeraCrypt and use it by following the same steps that I illustrated in the previous paragraphs (please note, however, that the MacOS version of VeraCrypt is not available in Italian).

HiddenDIR (Windows)

HiddenDIR is another solution to consider: it is a portable software (so it does not require any installation procedure), free and easy to use. Are you curious to find out how it works? Basically, HiddenDIR allows you to protect your files by hiding the folders in which they are contained and by setting a password to protect its own settings (so no one, apart from you, can change the program settings and make hidden files visible again). Let's find out how it works.

First, download HiddenDIR on your PC by connecting to the program's website and clicking on the blue button Download placed in the section Download Version x.x (At the bottom of the page). Then extract the contents in any folderzip archive just downloaded and launch the file HiddenDIR.exe present in the folder HiddenDIR vxx.

After starting the program, press the button Hide (the icon depicting the green folder located at the top) and select the folder containing the files and notes you want to hide. Then click on the button Password (the symbol of key located at the top), type the password with which you want to protect the HiddenDIR settings in the text fields Password e Confirm Password e, per conclusdere, pigia sul bottone Set password and close the program.

Even if the Windows setting for displaying hidden files is enabled, no one will be able to view files that have been hidden with HiddenDIR. To make a hidden file visible again with the program, in fact, you have to start it, access its settings using the password set previously, click on the button OK, check the item Select to Unhide and then press the button unhide located at the top.

Utility Disk (macOS)

If you don't feel like installing new software on your Mac, you will surely find the application very useful Disk Utility, which allows you to create password-protected image files (a bit like VeraCrypt with encrypted volumes). To call it back, go to Launchpad (l'icona del rocket on the Dock), open the folder Other and click the icon of Disk Utility. Now, carefully follow the steps I am about to show you in order to create the encrypted volume in which to save the files and notes you want to keep secret.

To begin with, click on the item Fillet present at the top left (in the macOS menu bar), click on the items New Image> Empty Image ... and in the fields Save as e Name, type the name you want to assign to the volume. Then click on the drop-down menu located in to choose where to save the volume, indicate in the field Dimensions the size you want to assign to it (eg. 7 GB) and select the item Mac OS extended (journaled) give menu to tendin Format. Finally, choose the voice Single Partition - Apple Partition Map from the menu Partitions, select the voice Sparse Bundle disk image from the menu Image format, then select the item 128-bit AES from the menu Encode And that's it.

Now, choose the password you want to protect the volume with, type in the text fields Password Verifica and then presses the buttons ChooseSaveend. Then go to the location where you saved the encrypted file, double-click on it to open it, type the password that you have just set in the appropriate text field and click on the button OK. If all went well, the encrypted volume will be opened in the Finder and you can manage it as a "classic" external memory unit.

When you finish working on the files in the volume, remember to "unmount" it by clicking on the symbol (⏏︎) which is present in the sidebar of the Finder (at the volume itself) or right-click on its icon on the desktop and select the item Eject from the menu that opens. Easy, right?

Note Crypt Sicure (Android)

You want to protect the personal notes on your device Android? I advise you to use Secure Crypt Notes, a semi-free application that, as easily understood from its name, allows you to protect your notes with a password. I define this solution as semi-free because it is necessary to purchase its full version (which costs € 1,99) to take advantage of some extra features such as the one that allows you to automatically create a hidden backup database which can be useful for preventing data loss in case of problems.

After installing and starting Safe Crypt Notes on your device, start the app, grant it the required permissions to use all its features, type the name you want to assign to the database in the text field Enter the database name e pulsing sul pulsating Crea. In the box Enter password, type the password with which you want to protect your notes by filling in the fields New password e Confirm password and then tap on the item OK.

At this point, tap on database name where you want to keep your secret notes, type in the appropriate text field the password that you have just set up to access it and tap the button OK. Press the green button (+) to create a new note and, in the screen that opens, write your notes by filling in the fields Title, Tags e Note and save the text of the same by pressing on the symbol of floppy disk located at the top right. The note will be saved in the database and you will be able to access it freely after entering the database using the password you set.

If you want to learn more about the topic of encrypting files on Android, read the guide I published on my blog: there you will find other interesting apps that can come in handy.