Dropped My Passport Elite - Recovery an Option for Encrypted Content?

Hello - I dropped the My Passport Elite drive when it was turned off. After initially working for a couple of minutes the drive is no longer functional. It powers up, and I can hear the drive spinning but it does not show up as a drive in a PC. Obviously, this is a job for a professional recovery service if anything is to be saved; however, I have a question:

The drive came with the WD encryption application which I used for all files on the drive. If the encrypted contents are recovered and used on a drive other than the model I used (or even for a non-My Passport brand drive), will the password work to unencrypt the contents a new drive? Will the contents need to be transferred to an identical drive model? Or will the original drive have to be repaired (if that is even an option)?

Thanks - R


The WD security protection is a 256-bit AES encryption, and there is no “forgot password” option to reset the password.

We regret to inform you that if you have forgotten the password, the information stored on the hard drive cannot be retrieved due to the encryption.

I regret but Western Digital does neither cover Data Recovery under its warranty policy nor has any in-house data recovery service. But, it does provide approval for the data recovery from any alternate 3rd party options.

For a detailed list for which WD external drives support encryption, and if data recovery is possible, please check the below link.

Title: WD External Drive Encryption Compatibility Matrix

Link: WD External Drive Hardware Encryption Compatibility Matrix

No one said anything about a missing password. I need to know if the encrypted contents can be moved to another drive or not. If yes - are there any conditions as to what type of drive needs to be used. The same model of drive, any Western Digital portable drive or any manufacturer. I submitted a trouble ticket and got the same non-sensical answer and then the ticket was closed out when I asked for them to clarify. What is going on with your technical support?

as you said in your original post … “Obviously, this is a job for a professional recovery service”

So, with that in mind … i would personally be contacting a professional recovery service and asking them that question, since WD don’t do data recovery.

Here’s some that WD Recommend with contact deatils.



As per the information you provided above I understood that the drive is not functional and you are concerned about your data. Please correct me if I am wrong. In this case, I would suggest you, first try to recover your data with the help of free data recovery software and save the recovered file on another drive. After saving the data check if you can access the encrypted data on another drive or not.

I believe testing this thing on your own will solve your question rather than waiting for other people to first confirm this.

You can give a shot to Stellar Free data recovery software. It allows recovering data for free upto 1 GB. By using this software you will be able to know whether after recovering the encrypted file it will be accessible or not.