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Original author(s)Paul Le Roux
Initial release1997; 27 years ago (1997)
Final release
2.02a / 2000; 24 years ago (2000)[1][2]
Operating systemWindows 9x, Windows NT
Size465 kB
TypeTransparent disk encryption
LicenseFree software[3]

Encryption for the Masses (E4M) is a free disk encryption software for Windows NT and Windows 9x families of operating systems. E4M is discontinued; it is no longer maintained. Its author, former criminal cartel boss Paul Le Roux, joined Shaun Hollingworth (the author of the Scramdisk) to produce the commercial encryption product DriveCrypt for the security company SecurStar.

The popular source-available freeware program TrueCrypt is based on E4M's source code.[4] However, TrueCrypt uses a different container format than E4M, which makes it impossible to use one of these programs to access an encrypted volume created by the other.

Allegation of stolen source code[edit]

Shortly after TrueCrypt version 1.0 was released in February 2004, the TrueCrypt Team reported receiving emails from Wilfried Hafner, manager of SecurStar, claiming that Paul Le Roux had stolen the source code of E4M from SecurStar as an employee. According to the TrueCrypt Team, the emails stated that Le Roux illegally distributed E4M, and authored an illegal license permitting anyone to base derivative work on E4M and distribute it freely, which Hafner alleges Le Roux did not have any right to do, claiming that all versions of E4M always belonged only to SecurStar. For a time, this led the TrueCrypt Team to stop developing and distributing TrueCrypt.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Download E4M". E4M Encryption Software Unofficial Site. Archived from the original on 2012-04-12.
  2. ^ Dean, Sarah (2001-07-29). "On-The-Fly Encryption: A Comparison". Sarah Dean. Archived from the original on 2011-12-28.
  3. ^ "License agreement for Encryption for the Masses". Paul Le Roux. 2000. Retrieved 2014-05-28.
  4. ^ "truecrypt-archive/doc/License-v3.1.txt at master · DrWhax/truecrypt-archive". GitHub. 3 July 2011. Retrieved 17 September 2023.
  5. ^ TrueCrypt Team (2004-02-03). "P. Le Roux (author of E4M) accused by W.Hafner (SecurStar)". Newsgroupalt.security.scramdisk. Usenet: a7b8b26d77f67aa7c5cc3f55b84c3975@news.teranews.com. Retrieved 2014-05-28.

External links[edit]