Encrypted Notes

What Is It?

Encrypted notes is the option to protect your notes using encryption within the Mac note taking app. With encrypted notes you supply a password that the note taking app uses as a key to access and unlock the encrypted notes. The encryption helps keep sensitive information secure by scrambling it – the notes cannot be unscrambled without the password.

Mac Notes Apps with This Feature

What Else Should I Know?

It’s important to note that password protection is not the same as encryption. If a Mac note taking app lets you password-protect a note or document, that app won’t open that note or document without the password you set. However, you or anyone else could use another application like a text editor to examine the raw contents of the note or document, and in most cases read its contents. In contrast, an encrypted note or document’s raw contents cannot be viewed using another application because those contents have been scrambled.

Note taking apps differ in the granularity to which you can apply encryption. For example, some apps encrypt all of the notes in their repository using a single password, while others let you encrypt individual notes using separate passwords (and of course there are apps that fall somewhere in between).

There are many different encryption algorithms, with varying strength. Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) on the Mac is a popular choice, because it’s built into the operating system, and because of the level of security the encryption algorithm affords.