Looks like the 10+ year TrueCrypt project shut down without warning, suddenly. This stings a little because it was a great little tool I utilize often. The website now only shows some vague warnings and a link to 7.2 for decryption use only.
Like many, I’ve recommended using TrueCrypt for years, and in fact I’m a very heavy user of it myself.
What does this mean for us that use TrueCrypt? Well, not much immediately. The program continues to work well. I believe TrueCrypt, specifically TrueCrypt 7.1a, remains secure.
What little evidence there is points to the developers simply having grown tired of maintaining it, and having no interest in moving it forward to new operating system versions and new disk formats.
The future of TrueCrypt…
The developer also expressed concern that forking (making a copy of) the open-source source code and having others continue development is a bad idea. My expectation, however, is that this is exactly what will happen.
Should you stop using TrueCrypt?
No. In my opinion the average user should not stop using TrueCrypt if it’s working well for them now.
Being a wonderful cross-platform solution, I use it on Linux, Windows (XP to 8.1 Pro) and Mac 10.4-10.9 and will continue to use it until I find a solution to replace it. Hold on to your 7.1a install exe and watch out for look-alike faux sites or spin off projects for obvious reasons.
At this time there is no evidence whatsoever that there is any kind of a security issue with TrueCrypt. Yes, the developers left a snarky “TrueCrypt is not secure” comment, but I and many others believe that simply refers to the fact that they will no longer be supporting it or adapting it to new environments.
What alternatives are there?
That’s the million dollar question. There are so many and it really depends on your specific needs and the platform you use. I recommend contacting me if you need assistance or a recommendation for your specific need.
If you have data on TrueCrypt and need assistance, let me know. We’ll move you if necessary and/or create a long-term plan for your data encryption/protection.