FileVault Disk Encryption – How to Protect Data on Your Mac

October 18, 2019Nicole Jones

FileVault Encryption is a default method to encrypt the startup disk on Mac from unauthorized access. When your Mac is awake and plugged into the AC power, FileVault for Mac is able to create an automatically encryption in the background.

What is FileVault disc encryption? How to use the built-in encryption program to protect the data on your MacBook? Will the program protect all the files on your Mac? If you have any query about the excellent tool on Mac, you should learn more details from the article.

How to Use FileVault for Mac

Part 1: The Ultimate Review of FileVault Disc Encryption

Even if you have used the MacBook for a time, you might not really sure what it is before. Here is the ultimate review of the FileVault disc encryption you should know.

What is FileVault Encryption

FileVault Encryption is the built-in encryption technology for Mac. It was introduced with 10.3 Panther in 2003, which was only able to protect your home directory. The FileVault2 released in 2011 with 10.7 Lion, which can encrypt entire contents on the startup drive. Once your computer is powered off, the encrypted data is unrecoverable without the password.

Moreover, the encryption technology also allows you to wipe your drive remotely using Find My Mac if your computer was stolen. Even if your hard drive were removed from your Mac, the encrypted data would be scrambled and unreadable.

FileVault Encryption

Benefits of FileVault Disk Encryption

FileVault disk encryption uses an encryption technology called XTS-AES-128 encryption with a 256-bit key. It is secure and even typical laptop thief cannot break the encryption. If you were using your Mac to get access to sensitive data or protect your information from falling into the wrong hand, FileVault Encryption is a good option.

It adds a complexity layer to your machine by enforcing a passcode. When you have any trouble on keeping track of passwords, you should consider the strategy and if it is worth to use.

On the other hand, FileVault Encryption is not suitable to all Mac computers, especially for the old version of MacBook, once you enable FileVault 2, there will be a negative impact on I/O performance of approximately 20%-30% of modern CPUs.


How to Protect Mac Data via FileVault Encryption

Just as mentioned above, when you need to turn on FileVault Encryption to protect the private files, you have to plug into the AC power and keep the Mac awake. Moreover, you can enable and disable the feature on Mac at any time you want with ease.

Step 1:
Make sure you have the MacOS Lion or later. Open the "Apple menu" and go to "System Preferences" > "Security & Privacy".
Step 2:
Switch to the "FileVault" tab and click on the "Lock" icon at the bottom left corner.
Step 3:
When prompted, enter the administrator name and password. Then click the "Turn On FileVault" option to enable FileVault Encryption on Mac.
Step 4:
If there is another user account on your Mac, you have to set up another password for the user account, click the "Enable User" button and enter the password.
Turn On FileVault

Part 2: Best FileVault Alternative to Protect Private Information

Will FileVault Encryption protect all the files on your Mac? It is a pity that FileVault is only capable to protect the user data and file encryption. When you need to clear up the browser history, messages of Instant Massager and more others, Aiseesoft Mac Cleaner is the professional Mac management tool to remove junk files, clutters, large old files, shred files, delete duplicate files and monitor your Mac performances.

Mac Cleaner


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  • Remove cache data, old files, browsing history and more others.
  • Monitor the performance and storage space of your Mac computer.
  • Preview the junk files and unneeded data before a cleanup.
  • Manage your files and data based by name, size, time, etc.
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Step 1 Download the Mac Cleaner

Install the Mac Cleaner and launch the program on your Mac. As the FileVault Encryption alternative, it is able to check the system status of your Mac. Go to the "Cleaner" tab from the left side bar.


Step 2 Scan and select the private files

Click on the "Scan" button to start scanning for the private data on your Mac. Choose a data type, such as "System Junk" to remove the browsing history, and then you can preview the system junk files in detail.


Step 3 Clean up the private data on Mac

Check the boxes next to the private files and click on the "Clean" button at the bottom right side to remove the data completely and permanently. It is the best alternative of FileVault file encryption to keep the data safe.



You should learn more details about FileVault Encryption for Mac from the article. It is a great option to protect the local files on Mac. But if you need to remove the browsing history, email information, or even the deleted files, Aiseesoft Mac Cleaner is the recommended alternative.

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Mac Cleaner is a professional Mac management tool to remove junk files, clutter, large/old files, delete duplicate files and monitor your Mac performance.

Free DownloadFor macOS

Secure100% Secure. No Ads.

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