How to decrypt encrypted files
Here you will find out:
- how to encrypt a file in Windows
- how to decrypt files without a password
- how DiskInternals Partition Recovery can help you
Are you ready? Let's read!
If you need to decrypt encrypted files
People encrypt their files to restrict usage and improve the file’s security. Basically, it is almost impossible to access an encrypted file without decrypting it with a password. What happens, then, if you don't know the file’s password? Below is how to decrypt a file on Windows.
Encrypt a file in Windows
You don’t need a third-party application to encrypt a file or folder saved on a Windows computer. Already, Windows comes with a built-in encryption tool:
- Open the file location, look out for the exact file you want to encrypt, and right-click on it.
- Click “Properties” on the context menu.
- On the prompt box, navigate to the “General” tab and click on “Advanced…”
- Now, click the checkbox beside “Encrypt Contents to Secure Data”.
- Click OK to continue.
- On the pop-up box, check “Encrypt the File Only,” and then click OK to continue.
Decrypt files without a password
You could follow the same steps from above and decrypt your files by simply unchecking the "Encrypt Contents to Secure Data" option from Properties >>> General >>> Advanced. However, this won't actually unlock a file encrypted with a password. If the file is encrypted with a password and you've forgotten it, but wish to regain access to the file, one of the ways to achieve that is by recovering the previous version of the file.
It is important to say that upgrading or reinstalling Windows can leave you with encrypted files you never knew about. You may find guides on how to decrypt a file without a password using online file decryption tools. But, before you go on to use an online tool to decrypt your file(s), it is important that you understand the privacy risks with such action. Most online tools that help to decrypt files without a password are not actually safe and secure — your personal data in the encrypted file may be exploited.
Similarly, if the primary method of decrypting a file is unchecking the "Encrypt Contents to Secure Data" option in the file properties box, then you should try using reliable data recovery software to recover the encrypted file.
How to recover data with a software tool
Recover encrypted files and folders from healthy or damaged NTFS disks and RAID arrays. Whether you simply moved a disk with protected files to another PC, deleted an encrypted file or folder, formatted the partition, or experienced a hard disk corruption, Diskinternals EFS Recovery will help you get back your encrypted information quickly and easily.
EFS Recovery supports NTFS/EFS partitions created by Windows 10, Windows 7 and 2008 Server R1/R2, as well as Windows 2000, XP, 2003 Server, and Windows Vista.