Symantec Encryption Desktop (formerly known as PGP Desktop) provides easy to use and secure encryption to protect sensitive data on laptops, PCs, or removable media. Laptops and flash drives are easily lost, and even desktop computers can be stolen. Symantec Encryption Desktop also includes a secure shredder, to really delete files you want to delete.  


The UIC license for PGP centers on PGP Whole Disk Encryption, PGP WDE, which securely encrypts the entire contents of your laptop or desktop, including boot sectors, system, and swap files. After you install PGP desktop encryption on your computer, PGP Whole Disk Encryption will automatically run on its hard drive. After your hard disk is encrypted, you must log in to PGP before you can boot the computer. Operating system login bypass tricks won't work. PGP desktop encryption offers:

  • Encryption for the email you receive, even if it comes to you unencrypted.
  • Encryption for other files and folders stored on your personal computer.
  • Digital signatures for any of the above, which prove both the origin of the material and that it has not been altered.
  • Shred, a secure delete. Normal deleting only removes a file's name from the disk directory; its data remains on the disk until something else is written over it. Until then, you can use disk utility program such as Norton Utilities to recover the file.


A computer will need to meet the system requirements in order to run PGP.

Note that the operating system requirements for the installers we have at UIC may be slightly different from those listed there on Symantec's page. Specifically, the newest operating systems currently supported are Windows 8.1 and Mac OS X 10.9.3.

The ACCC is running a PGP Universal Key Server, in which your PGP key is protected with your UIC Active Directory ID and password, which is your UIC netID and your ACCC common password.

A typical computer using PGP will need two things both available for no charge through the online Webstore:

  • PGP Universal Server license, 1 per person
  • PGP WDE, 1 per machine

Licenses for PGP are not available to undergraduate students at this time.


PGP Endpoint, which offered additional encryption of data on removable storage and portable devices, is no longer available. We are testing its replacement and will make it available as soon as possible.


There is no charge for this service.


Email encryption@uic.edu
Phone 312-413-0003


Last updated: 

June 25, 2014

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