The usual problem with encryption programs is that you need to install the encryption program in order to decrypt the encrypted files. Imagine you encrypt a file and email it to your friends – they cannot decrypt it without installing the same encryption program on their computer first. The AXCrypt tool and Sophos Encryption Tool are good examples of this. Protect Me! addresses this problem in an entirely different manner – it enables you to store confidential files in a single password protected (.EXE) container. This container is a portable executable program which you can share with friends. This container does not require any other software for decryption of the contents.
Protect Me! securely encrypts the contents of the container with AES (previously known as Rijndael) cipher and compiles it into a single .EXE file that can be used from a portable USB drive or sent by email. To unlock your files, simply run the container executable, enter the correct password and extract the files that you want to access. It uses strong 256-bit AES cipher for encryption of your files and uses SHA-1 for verifying passwords.
You can download the free Protect Me! from http://www.wecode.biz/p/protect-me.html. The download is in form of a setup file which you have to install. The download file is less than 1 MB in size and takes less than 1 second to download. The program is designed using .NET 3.5 so you need to install .NET 3.5 runtime in order to run this program. The .NET 3.5 runtime comes pre-installed in Windows 7.
After the installation you can run the Protect Me! program. You can just drag and drop any files or folders onto this window to add them to the container. The container size cannot exceed a fixed limit of 800 MB. After adding files and folder, choose a password and click on the Create Container button to start creating the container. You will be shown a file save dialog, choose a file name and location where you want to create the new container.
A portable container executable is created containing all the files you selected in encrypted format. When you run this container later in any computer, it will ask you for the password validation. Simple supply the same password that you used when creating the container executable.
A window will open up showing all your files you encrypted originally. You can select one or more files and run them by clicking on the Run. If you want to extract any of the selected files, then just click on the Save As button. You can extract all the contents by clicking on the Extract Everything button.
Protect Me is a great freeware tool for creating portable encrypted containers. It uses industry strength AES-256 bit encryption cipher which makes it an ideal choice to keep your secret files protected and secure.