I remember 10 or so years back, when I was using TrueCrypt to encrypt folders on my system hard drives. I never had anything truly worth encrypting back then, but I did it more as a learning exercise. I found it to be quite easy actually. The folks at TrueCrypt had made the process pretty hard to mess up.
Sadly, a few years back TrueCrypt shut their doors with out much of an explanation, but one good thing to come out of it was the open-sourcing of their software. The project has now been continued as VeraCrypt, and is going well from what I can tell. This is a huge deal for the linux community, as well as the Windows community really. For Linux it’s a win because while there are options for encryption out there, VeraCrypt is one of the easiest to use, and can do Full Disk encryption.
For Windows users, this is an excellent tool that they can acquire for free, has the auditing available in Open Source, and can do Full Disk encryption, even on Windows drives.
There are plenty of Commercial programs out there for Windows, but not open source, and not free by any means. The Microsoft encryption software is only available on Professional and Enterprise versions of the OS, so that leaves a huge majority of users out in the cold.
Being Open Source, a security firm recently audited VeraCrypt and found multiple “critical” flaws, and provided that information back to the VeraCrypt folks who have promptly fixed the large majority of those flaws.
The remaining flaws can apparently be dealt with through proper configuration following their user documentation.
If you’re looking to protect your private, personal information, I highly recommend giving VeraCrypt a try.