Beginner's Tutorial

System Encryption

 Supported Systems

 Hidden Operating System

 Rescue Disk

Plausible Deniability

 Hidden Volume

  Protection of Hidden Vol.

  Security Requirements

 Hidden Operating System



Hardware Acceleration

Encryption Algorithms





Hash Algorithms




Technical Details


 Encryption Scheme

 Modes of Operation

 Header Key Derivation

 Random Number Gen.


 Volume Format Spec.

 Standards Compliance

 Source Code

TrueCrypt Volume

 Creating New Volumes

 Favorite Volumes

 System Favorite Volumes

Main Program Window

 Program Menu

 Mounting Volumes

Supported Systems

Portable Mode


Tokens & Smart Cards

Language Packs

Hot Keys

Security Model

Security Requirements

 Data Leaks

  Paging File

  Hibernation File

  Memory Dump Files

 Unencrypted Data in RAM

 Physical Security


 Multi-User Environment

 Authenticity and Integrity

 New Passwords & Keyfiles

 Password/Keyfile Change

 Trim Operation


 Reallocated Sectors


 Journaling File Systems

 Volume Clones

 Additional Requirements

Command Line Usage

Backing Up Securely


 Use Without Admin Rights

 Sharing over Network

 Background Task

 Removable Medium Vol.

 TrueCrypt System Files

 Removing Encryption

 Uninstalling TrueCrypt

 Digital Signatures



Issues and Limitations


Future Development


Version History



Security Requirements and Precautions >  Physical Security Search


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Physical Security

If an attacker can physically access the computer hardware and you use it after the attacker has physically accessed it, then TrueCrypt may become unable to secure data on the computer.* This is because the attacker may modify the hardware or attach a malicious hardware component to it (such as a hardware keystroke logger) that will capture the password or encryption key (e.g. when you mount a TrueCrypt volume) or otherwise compromise the security of the computer. Therefore, you must not use TrueCrypt on a computer that an attacker has physically accessed. Furthermore, you must ensure that TrueCrypt (including its device driver) is not running when the attacker physically accesses the computer. Additional information pertaining to hardware attacks where the attacker has direct physical access is contained in the section Unencrypted Data in RAM.

Furthermore, even if the attacker cannot physically access the computer hardware directly, he or she may be able to breach the physical security of the computer by remotely intercepting and analyzing emanations from the computer hardware (including the monitor and cables). For example, intercepted emanations from the cable connecting the keyboard with the computer can reveal passwords you type. It is beyond the scope of this document to list all of the kinds of such attacks (sometimes called TEMPEST attacks) and all known ways to prevent them (such as shielding or radio jamming). It is your responsibility to prevent such attacks. If you do not, TrueCrypt may become unable to secure data on the computer.

* In this section (Physical Security), the phrase "data on the computer" means data on internal and external storage devices/media (including removable devices and network drives) connected to the computer.

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