I'm not talking about full disk hardware encryption. I'm talking about software encryption.

encrypting /home prevents your data after your laptop is stolen. As far as I understand, encrypting / and /boot is supposed to protect against running malware that steals your passwords (Evil Abigail). But that can only work when there is a fully secure and signed boot process (UEFI, bootloader, kernel). And (at least currently) it's not the case. So what protection does it give?


It prevents accidental leaks of private data that is copied around.

For example, if /tmp is on the / partition, files from your encrypted /home partition could be copied to the unencrypted /tmp, thereby making them accessible to an attacker.

By encrypting the entire system, you avoid this channel.

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    For the same reason the swap partition (if any) should also be encrypted. – billc.cn Jan 28 '16 at 13:51
  • but 'accidental leaks' is not a new vector attack that is prevented by that encryption. to rephrase question: what's the point of encrypting system binaries? – piotrek Jan 28 '16 at 21:14
  • An attacker reading your harddisk (e.g. at a checkpoint) would be able to tell whether you have services with known vulnerabilities installed, which could be exploited when you turn on the machine and open the encrypted /home container. – Simon Richter Jan 31 '16 at 15:10

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