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I recently purchased my first smartphone, a Droid X2. I was listening to the radio and heard security advice about protecting data on smartphones. It specifically said you should install antivirus software, password protect and encrypt your data on the smartphone.

Under Settings & Security it has the option for Data Encryption.

Should I set up data encryption and will I lose the ability to plug in my phone to my laptop and edit or view data on the SD card?

We have data encryption on a laptop at work. If I use this feature and encrypt my memory card I am unable to read the data on my personal computer at home.

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According to this forum post, the SD card is not fully encrypted. Rather, after you enable encryption any new data is encrypted.

So for example, if you take a picture, then enable encryption, then take another picture, the first picture will be unencrypted but the second will be encrypted (assuming your pictures are saved to the SD card). If you pull out your SD card and try to look at the pictures elsewhere you'll only be able to view picture #1.

However, putting your phone into PC mode and connecting it to a PC will allow you to view and copy both the encrypted and unecrypted files. At least according to that post. So to answer your question: No, you will not lose the ability to plug in your phone to your laptop and edit or view data on the SD card.

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I think so.

I have files that I used to copy from my SD card to my PC using the USB Mass Storage option under the "USB connection" pop-up that I could use -- no problem. I checked the flag under Settings->Location & Security->Data encryption->Storage encryption and now I can't read them. I tried unchecking the box, it says that future files will be decrypted, but existing files will remain encrypted.

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If you have a question please post it as such rather than asking it in an answer. – eldarerathis Mar 4 '12 at 21:08
I did that originally, and the interface asked me to consider this question instead. I'll go ahead and start a new question and link to this one. – Gdalya Mar 5 '12 at 17:19

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