FileVault 2 ...How secure really is it?

olletsocmit

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 24, 2010
296
2
USA
FileVault 2, how secure really is it. Are we talking this is good to prevent normal average people not to be able to just pull ur HDD and just access it in another computer? Or are we talking no worries if it gets into the wrong hands of someone that knows their stuff. Should we be using something much better and more secure. I have all my drives encrypted.

I just came across this article on Engadget that you can use Passwore and get past FileVault 2 in under an hour.... This makes me think that anyone who knows how to download a torrent and is 1/2 decent with computers can pass the encryption. I am sure this is also software all law enforcement has a well..

here is the article: http://www.engadget.com/2012/02/02/passware-claims-firevault-2-can-be-cracked-in-under-an-hour-sel/
 

kagharaht

macrumors 6502a
Oct 7, 2007
898
390
FileVault 2, how secure really is it. Are we talking this is good to prevent normal average people not to be able to just pull ur HDD and just access it in another computer? Or are we talking no worries if it gets into the wrong hands of someone that knows their stuff. Should we be using something much better and more secure. I have all my drives encrypted.

I just came across this article on Engadget that you can use Passwore and get past FileVault 2 in under an hour.... This makes me think that anyone who knows how to download a torrent and is 1/2 decent with computers can pass the encryption. I am sure this is also software all law enforcement has a well..

here is the article: http://www.engadget.com/2012/02/02/passware-claims-firevault-2-can-be-cracked-in-under-an-hour-sel/
There is also a 20% plus hit on performance. Search Ars article online and you'll find the review.
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,306
10,038
California
FileVault 2, how secure really is it. Are we talking this is good to prevent normal average people not to be able to just pull ur HDD and just access it in another computer? Or are we talking no worries if it gets into the wrong hands of someone that knows their stuff. Should we be using something much better and more secure. I have all my drives encrypted.

I just came across this article on Engadget that you can use Passwore and get past FileVault 2 in under an hour.... This makes me think that anyone who knows how to download a torrent and is 1/2 decent with computers can pass the encryption. I am sure this is also software all law enforcement has a well..

here is the article: http://www.engadget.com/2012/02/02/passware-claims-firevault-2-can-be-cracked-in-under-an-hour-sel/
That is outdated info. That hack uses direct memory access (DMA) to access the data, and DMA access in OS X was blocked in Lion 10.7.2.

There is also a 20% plus hit on performance. Search Ars article online and you'll find the review.
It is not that bad on newer machines (i-series chips like i5 and up). Here are some benchmarks. I would be very surprised if the average user could tell the difference without running benchmark software.

If you have data on there you care about at all, there really is little reason not to use FV2 IMO.
 

olletsocmit

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jun 24, 2010
296
2
USA
Yea I use FileVault and have all my external drives encrypted. As well as other things like 1Password. I think I do notice that it's slower when using it thou
 

KALLT

macrumors 603
Sep 23, 2008
5,116
3,167
I use FileVault on my Intel Core 2 Duo MacBook (2008) with an SSD and found the performance impact negligible, although booting takes a bit longer. I agree with Weaselboy, the security benefits outweigh the performance penalty if you find data protection important.
 

steve23094

macrumors 68030
Apr 23, 2013
2,694
1,480
Does Filevault cause a problem if you get disk corruption?

Let's say you had a logical fault with your files that would normally take an app like Diskwarrior to fix, does using FV mean it's impossible or more difficult to recover data?
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,306
10,038
California
Does Filevault cause a problem if you get disk corruption?

Let's say you had a logical fault with your files that would normally take an app like Diskwarrior to fix, does using FV mean it's impossible or more difficult to recover data?
I have not used Diskwarrior, but according to this review it works fine with FV2.

I did have a disk error once a couple years ago I was only able to fix by unencrypting then fixing the error with Disk Utility, then reencrypting.
 

KALLT

macrumors 603
Sep 23, 2008
5,116
3,167
It’s also a good idea to make backups frequently. Corruption and disk failures can happen regardless of encryption.
 
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