FileVault for Macs

When portable devices are lost or stolen, the data stored on them is easily read unless the disks are hardware encrypted. Almost all portable devices will contain some confidential data e.g. letters, spreadsheets and emails that have been read and cached on the device. We have therefore developed a simple way for you to switch on encryption via the Physics Self-Service system. Once encrypted, the logon details of the owner’s account are used to encrypt the whole disk and without a successful logon by the owner the disk is unreadable. The system also provides a secure method to recover the system if the password is forgotten.

  1. Make sure your laptop systems is running at least OS X 10.10 Yosemite. If you first need to upgrade your laptop instructions are here
  2. Save and close all other applications as the system will shortly be restarted.
  3. Open the Self Service application in the Applications folder.
  4. On the front page of Self Service or in the FileVault2 category there should be "Enable FileVault2 for Portable Devices", click on the icon and read the instructions and click "Enable" when you are ready to enable FileVault.
  5. The system will reboot.
  6. The next user to login to the system will be the FileVault enabled user for the system. This means that this user accounts password will be required to unlock the systems hard disk.
  7. When the user next logs out FileVault will be enabled for the system.
  8. The system will then encrypt the system disk which can take several hours.
  9. When the system is next restarted you will be prompted to unlock your encrypted disk with your user account password.

Once the disk is fully encrypted and you would like to know your individual FileVault recovery key email itsupport@physics.ox.ac.uk and we will let you know the recovery key.

If you have a university owned Apple system and you would enable Self Service along side your existing setup please email itsupport@physics.ox.ac.uk and we can take a look at your existing setup and enable the Self Service system.

Categories: Apple | Disk Encryption | FileVault | Laptops | Mac | OS X