STANFORD UNIVERSITY

SECURE COMPUTING

How to Remove a Recovery Key From Your Computer

Note: encryption can result in irretrievable loss of data if the keys/passwords are misplaced or destroyed; consult a qualified system administrator if you feel you need assistance.

How to Remove Your Certificate and Keys

If you want an extra layer of protection, you can delete your certificates and keys from your computer. To access your files, you’ll have to have the removable media with your key every time you want to access the file. This is most useful for mobile users with laptops where the private key is initially removed before transit, and imported back to the laptop to use the file.

To remove your keys from the computer:

  1. Launch the Microsoft Internet Explorer web browser.

    Step 1
  2. From the Tools menu, click Internet Options.

    Step 2
  3. On the Content tab, in the Certificates section, click Certificates.

    Step 3
  4. The Personal tab comes up by default. There may be more than one certificate present. Select each certificate until Encrypting File System appears in the Certificate Intended Purposes field.

    Step 4
  5. Click the Remove button.

    Step 5
  6. Click Yes.
  7. Click the Close button in the Certificate window.
  8. Click OK on the Internet Options window.
  9. To complete the removal, log off (or shut down) your computer.

Video Helplet

To see how to remove a recovery key from your computer, view this video helplet.

If There's No Back-up...

If you did not back-up your keys, or if there is a problem with your back-up, your DRA can still recover your files. Submit a HelpSU request for assistance. Additionally, if you have permitted other users to EFS share your encrypted files, those users can recover your data.

Last modified Friday, 18-Apr-2008 10:12:14 AM

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