Encrypting a College-Owned Computer (macOS)

Posted March 2nd, 2021 at 4:25 pm.

Before you start, you will need access to the following:

  • a stable internet connection
  • an eligible college-provided Mac

Want to encrypt an email? See Using Email Encryption in Office 365.

Table of Contents:


FileVault Encryption — What and Why

Not all devices are eligible to be encrypted. To determine if yours is, check if Disk Encryption is present in Step 2: Encrypt.
  • What: FileVault is Apple’s built-in encryption program for Macs.
  • Why: Encryption is critical to the security of your device, and ensures your data is protected in the event its lost or stolen.


Encrypting your Mac

Follow the steps below to ensure your device is encrypted properly.

Note: The screenshots used below were taken on a device running macOS Big Sur. Prior macOS versions may look different.
Step 1: Back up (Click me!)
  • Option 1: via your Home Drive (H:)*
    *Simply move any locally stored files to your mapped H:
  • Option 2: via Code42
Step 2: Encrypt (Click me!)
  1. Open Software Center
  2. On the left-hand pane, click the Featured tab
  3. Find Disk Encryption, click Encrypt
    If Disk Encryption isn’t present:

    Your device may not be eligible to be encrypted.

    Please reach out to the Help Desk if this is the case.

  4. Wait for the Disk Encryption policy to complete
  5. Click the Apple Icon () > Log Out
  6. Log back in
  7. In the top-center of your screen, click Enable Now
  8. If prompted*, enter your College username and password
    *If you’re not prompted for credentials, skip this step.
  9. Allow your device some time to complete the process.
Step 3: Verify Encryption (Click me!)
  1. Click the Apple Icon () > System Preferences
  2. Click Security & Privacy
  3. Click the FileVault tab
  4. Ensure you see:
    • “Turn Off FileVault…”
    • “A recovery key has been set.”



If you have any additional questions or problems, don’t hesitate to reach out to the Help Desk!

Phone: 610-526-7440
Email: help@brynmawr.edu
Location: Canaday Library 1st Floor

Filed under: Information Security Tags: by Roy Smith

Comments are closed.