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When installing I'm given the option of encrypting my home folder — what does this do?

I know the basic idea behind encrypting, but what exactly does it mean to encrypt your home folder? Why would one choose to do that?

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marked as duplicate by Jorge Castro, Oli Mar 9 '11 at 0:26

This question was marked as an exact duplicate of an existing question.

up vote 0 down vote accepted

This is a duplicate question but here is a short answer anyway. The home folder is where all of your files and settings when you choose this option your home folder is encrypted. This prevents anyone who is not logged in as you from being able to access your home folder.

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