How to encrypt files with EFS Encryption on Windows 10

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  1. You can add Encrypt and Decrypt to the right click context menu by adding this entry into the registry:

    Open Regedit.

    Navigate to: HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerAdvanced

    Create a new 32-bit DWORD value (in the right pane) here named EncryptionContextMenu and set its value data to 1. If you are running 64-bit Windows 10, you still need to create a 32-bit DWORD value.

    Close Registry Editor and reboot. You can now encrypt and decrypt files without the hassle.

    If you have never used the EFS before, you’ll be prompted to backup your private key when you encrypt your first file. You’ll only need to do this once and is recommended you keep the key safe on a flash drive so you can recover your data if you ever format or have to reinstall your machine. Even if you use the same credentials, the SAM (Security Account Manager) file changes each time, creating a new password hash and as EFS uses the SAM file to encrypt your data, make sure you back up your key. Also, you cannot encrypt the SAM file to prevent anyone from getting your user credentials.

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