Skip to Main

Encryption & Computer Basics

UT Southwestern protects data and users through the use of encryption, among several other safeguards.


Encryption is the process of making data unreadable and/or secure to unauthorized users. It is a necessary part of protecting business and health data.

Key Points

  • Hardware encryption means the encryption happens within the drive and is enabled by default.
  • All portable storage devices must be encrypted.
  • All portable storage devices, excluding laptops, must utilize hardware (“built-in”) encryption to provide this assurance.
  • Software encryption is frequently disabled or removed, often unintentionally, and results in risk of information compromise when these devices are lost or stolen.
lock icon

Login Required

If you are not on campus or VPN, you will be prompted for your username and password.

vertical stack of rectangular electronic shapes behind a shield with keyhole in its center

Computer Encryption

Encryption protects your information, patient data and UT Southwestern systems.

square block icon for electronics with center image of unlocked padlock next to bar with 4 dots

 Laptop Security

UT Southwestern security best practices for securing a laptop computer

male icon with padlock to the right of face

Portable Storage

USB sticks and portable storage drives are vulnerable and must be encrypted.

so a second identification factor using such things as a fingerprint or smart phone.

Related Policy

Questions about encryption & computer basics?

IR Service Desk