Another post for me that is simple and hopefully serves as an example for people trying to get blogging as #SQLNewBloggers.
One of the first things you need in a SQL Server database in order to implement encryption is a database master key, DMK. This is simple to create, though you need one in each database that will support encryption.
The syntax is easy, with only really an option to specify a password. There is no name, as there’s a single DMK per database. Set your context to the correct database and end enter:
CREATE MASTER KEY ENCRYPTION BY PASSWORD = ‘Som3thingR3ally$|tr0ng’;
When you execute this, you’ll just get a result message. At least, if it works you will. The password must conform to the password requirements of your Windows OS, which is good.
Note: This is a securable code, like the password for a user account. Make sure you store this in a password manager for your organization.
By default, this is protected by your password as well as the Service Master Key (SMK) on your instance. In practice this doesn’t usually mean much for you, but be aware of this.
You do need CONTROL permission on the database, though usually I’d expect a db_owner or more permissions to actually create these keys.
And, of course, back up the key as soon as you can.
This was about 5 minutes work for me. I would guess most new bloggers could read, understand, and produce an explanation of this in 30 minutes.
CREATE MASTER KEY – https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms174382.aspx
Create a Database Master Key – https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa337551.aspx