Administrator rights, encryption policies, and credential storage are some of the key features when it comes to protecting your phone. PINs and a swipe pattern are just a few methods of lock screen encryption most people are familiar with. It gives people a sense of safety knowing their personal information is kept hidden from the average person.

That is, until it starts working against you, the owner of the Android device. When you’ve decided that you want to change something about your phone only to be left with an error.

Your phone will state something along the lines of “Disabled by administrator, encryption policy or credential storage,” and it has you scratching your head. After all, you’re the administrator. You’re the one who chose the encryption policy and credential storage. Can it be removed? Yes, it can, luckily for you.

1. Disable Non-Essential Administrators

Device Administration is one of the levels of protection put it place that was mentioned before. If your phone is lost or stolen, Device Administration can lock or erase everything on the device.

Device Administration can also give certain privileges to apps, by allowing a user to install or delete apps. Why? Because some apps, typically third-party protection apps, can have their security bypassed by simply deleting or uninstalling an app, thereby, effectively deleting the security.

On top of that, warnings are put in place when an unknown source is poking your phone, and outright block the source. But, before you can remove or change certain aspects of your phone, you need to disable administrator privileges. Here’s what you do:

1. Open the Settings app. It’s the GEAR icon.

2. Keep scrolling until you locate “Security.” Select it.

Device Administrators

3. Now, scroll until you locate “Device Administrators.” Tap it.

4. Every app listed that has a checkmark is an app that has administrator privileges. You need to single out apps that aren’t necessary or the apps that may be causing all the trouble. Once its privileges have been removed, you should have the opportunity to alter or uninstall the app or make changes.

2. Disable your Virtual Protection Network

Your Android device does a pretty good job at protecting your personal information, but it isn’t perfect. A virtual protection network, or “VPN,” takes that protection a step further with more encryption, changing your IP address, or completely hiding your IP address, with the added benefit of access to blocked websites.

But, depending on your VPN, it may have disrupted your encryption policy, credential storage or administrator rights. The simplest way of fixing the error is to disable your VPN. Disabling your VPN is entirely on you. Every VPN has a different way of being disabled.

3. Decrypt your Device’s Storage

Encrypting your device’s storage is yet another line of defense that further lessens the chance of someone swiping your personal information if they manage to get your phone. Specific information might be encrypted and that’s why you’re getting an error. It needs to be decrypted and here’s how you do it:

1. Open the Settings app. It’s the GEAR icon.

2. Keep scrolling until you locate “Security.” Select it.

Encrypt Phone

3. Now, scroll until you locate “Encrypt Phone.” It might be labeled “Encryption” or anything related to encryption. It depends on your phone.

4. If your device’s storage was encrypted, you should see the option to “Decrypt Device.” Select it.

5. Afterwards, locate “Decrypt External SD card,” if you have an external storage.

Dump All of your Device’s Credentials

Credentials are another line of defense for your phone that makes surfing the web just a little more safer. Trusted credentials are servers that have been given credentials that state their website is legitimate.

Credentials verify that a website is what it says it is. If you went to visit a website called “website.com” and it was given proper credentials, then its credentials will say it owns the “website.com” domain.

However, if its credentials said otherwise, well, then there could be something fishy going on. With websites keeping credentials like these, it prevents other websites from snaggy a well known company name in hopes of doing whatever it is their end goal would be.

Devices come with a set of trusted credentials and the public keys needed that can determine if the website is what it states it is. You’ll know if the website isn’t the legitimate version of what you’re looking for. Most of the time you don’t even bother with the trust credentials, but in this case, it may be your solution. Here’s how you get started:

1. Open the Settings app. It’s the GEAR icon.

2. Keep scrolling until you locate “Security.” Select it.

clear credentials

3. Make your way down to “Clear Credentials” or “Trusted Credentials” and then delete from there. Tap it. Confirm the dump by selecting OK.