School CX SCH.cx – How To Use OneDrive’s “Personal Vault” to Protect Files. Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud storage service now includes a “personal safe deposit box” for sensitive files. These files are encrypted and protected with additional two-factor authentication, even if they are synchronized to the Windows 10 PC.
OneDrive’s Personal Vault will be available worldwide on September 30, 2019. It can run on Windows 10, Android, iPhone, iPad, and the Web.
What is a “personal vault” in OneDrive?
Personal Vault is an additional secure storage area for files in OneDrive. For example, if you want to store sensitive financial documents or passport copies in OneDrive, you may need to put them in Personal Vault to improve security.
Your personal safe deposit box requires additional authentication before you can access any files in it. Every time you visit them, you must provide a two-factor authentication code, PIN code, fingerprint authentication, or face authentication. On Windows 10, you can use Windows Hello for authentication. After 20 minutes of inactivity, they are automatically locked, forcing you to authenticate again before accessing them. If you access them through the OneDrive website, they will not be cached by your browser.
Personal Vault encrypts the files in it. On Windows 10, Personal Vault stores these files in the BitLocker encrypted area of the hard drive. This method can be used even if you have Windows 10 Home and do not use BitLocker for any other functions. Microsoft says that your files can also be encrypted on Microsoft’s servers.
It is not possible to share files stored in Personal Vault with anyone. Even if you share a file and then move it into the Personal Vault, the sharing of that file will also be disabled. This gives you peace of mind: as long as you store it here, you won’t accidentally share sensitive files.
Using the OneDrive app on your phone, you can scan documents and take photos directly from the Personal Vault and store them in a safe location without having to place them elsewhere on the phone first.
Other large cloud storage services (Dropbox, Google Drive, and Apple iCloud Drive) have not yet provided similar features.
Best for Office 365
Before you get started, it’s worth noting that the free version of OneDrive and the 100GB plan limit your Personal Vault to a maximum of three files. You can add multiple files to an archive (such as a ZIP file) and store the archive as a single file in the Vault, but it is limited to three files.
With the paid Office 365 Personal or Office 365 Home plan, you can store as many files as you want in your personal safe deposit box-the maximum OneDrive storage limit (maybe 1TB or more).
Six people can share a plan, Office 365 Home is $10 per month. If you want Microsoft Office or just some cheap cloud storage, Microsoft’s Office 365 plan is a great choice. It can provide up to 6 people with 1TB of storage space and access to Office 365 applications for $10 a month.
What platforms does it support?
Personal Vault can run on Windows 10, Android, iPhone, OneDrive on the iPad, you can also in onedrive.live.com on the network on the run.
Personal Vault is also only available in OneDrive Personal. It is not available in OneDrive Business.
How to use a personal safe
To use Personal Vault, just open the OneDrive folder and click or tap the “Personal Vault” folder. You can do this on your Windows 10 PC through the website or using a smartphone app, whichever way you prefer.
For example, on Windows 10, you just need to open File Explorer, click “OneDrive” in the sidebar, and then double-click “Personal Dropbox.”
When opening it for the first time, OneDrive will require User Account Control authorization to enable Personal Vault-probably because it uses the BitLocker function. Click through a short installation wizard to set it up.
Put all the files you want to protect in your personal safe deposit box.
Your vault will remain unlocked until you are inactive for twenty minutes. You can also lock it immediately by right-clicking on the Personal Vault folder and selecting “Lock Personal Vault”.
When you try to access Personal Vault in a locked state, you will be prompted for additional authentication.
For example, if you have set up two-factor authentication for your Microsoft account, you will be prompted to enter an authentication code. Just like the first time you log in to your Microsoft account from a new device, it works the same.
On every supported platform from Windows 10 to websites to smartphone apps, you can find the Personal Vault in the home folder of your OneDrive account. Just open it to unlock and access the files in it.
Should you use OneDrive’s personal safe?
Personal Vault is a popular feature that can be used on most modern platforms (not including Mac). If it supports the device you are using, this is a safer method of storing sensitive files than dumping them into a regular OneDrive folder.
Personal Vault can also encrypt files on Windows 10 systems, which is also good. We think that Microsoft should provide full disk BitLocker encryption for everyone on Windows 10, but this is better than nothing.
If you already want to store sensitive files in OneDrive, you may need to pause for a while, and then save them all in the Personal Vault. Another solution (such as storing confidential documents along with website login details in a password manager’s vault) may be more secure. They will be encrypted with the master password of your password manager.
For example, Microsoft’s documentation states that “Personal Vault on Windows 10 will not protect the names and hashes of files in your Personal Vault when the Vault is locked.” If you want to protect the privacy of your files to the utmost extent, it may be even better. Good use of other solutions. Microsoft does promise to be “committed to extending the protection of these attributes in future updates,” but this is a problem that will not be encountered with more mature file encryption solutions.
Overall, the personal vault is a great feature. More cloud storage services should provide additional protection for such sensitive files. Regrettably, those who do not pay for Office 365 can only use three files.