Where to find an Encrypted flash drive in Escape from Tarkov & complete The Tarkov Mystery task

Where to find an Encrypted flash drive in Escape from Tarkov & complete The Tarkov Mystery task
Images via Battlestate Games

Written by 

Harry Boulton


15th May 2024 12:39

You'll need to keep your eyes peeled for an Encrypted flash drive from now on in Escape from Tarkov, as finding this new item is key to completing 'The Tarkov Mystery' - a fresh task in the latest in-game event.

As with most quest-related items, there's little information given to you as to its whereabouts. Thankfully though, there are a few reliable spots that you can repeatedly run to get this task done as quickly as possible.

All Encrypted flash drive locations & where to find them

While this is a new item and thus it might have different properties, the Encrypted flash drive appears to have similar spawn points to the Secure flash drive, which many of us will be familiar with due to the 'What's on the Flash Drive' quest:

  • Safes
  • Filing cabinets
  • PC towers
  • Bags
  • Jackets
  • Scavs
  • Loose loot

Image of a safe in Escape from Tarkov
Click to enlarge

In my own personal experience I'd say that safes are the most consistent and reliable way to get the item, and running repeated routes on maps like Customs or Factory can help you net this as quickly as possible. I usually run from New Gas Station to Dorms, and then over to the Director's Office in Big Red to get a few safes. You can also check the campsite to the west of Two Story Dorms, as flash drives have a chance to spawn loose by the acoustic guitar and inside the tents.

Image of the acoustic guitar flash drive spawn in Escape from Tarkov
Click to enlarge

Another place that is great to check is the tent situated between the logging camp and the Outskirts extract on Woods, as this is one of the classic flash drive spawns that you'll find. Alternatively, Interchange as a whole is a fantastic map to run, as there are loads of PC towers that you can check, and plenty of jackets ruffle through too. Reserve is also great for this too, swapping out PC towers for an abundance of filing cabinets.

If you've not got much time or simply fancy your chances in trial and error, I'd recommend heading up to the office on Factory and checking the safe in there. You can be in and out in just a couple of minutes - providing you kill at least one Scav to avoid run-through status, making this arguably the most efficient way to run safes.

You'll have to be careful though, as plenty of other players will be doing the same thing, so I'd maybe recommend learning the route, taking a flashlight, and trying this at night.

How to complete The Tarkov Mystery task

All you need to do to complete 'The Tarkov Mystery' is find one Encrypted flash drive, and then hand it over to Skier. It doesn't appear as if there's a minimum level limit on the quest, so you should be able to go for it at any point in the progression.

Image of The Tarkov Mystery task in Escape from Tarkov
Click to enlarge

One sticking point is that, like most quests, you'll need to find the item in a raid, meaning that buying it on the Flea Market unfortunately isn't an option. You can be quite unlucky and not be able to find it for a while, as I've experienced many times with standard flash drives - but just keep running the right routes and you'll get it eventually. Make sure to hand over the Encrypted flash drive as soon as you safely extract from the raid, as you risk losing the all-important found-in-raid status.

The rewards for completing the task are as follows:

  • 6,300 XP
  • +0.03 Skier rep
  • 29,400 roubles
  • 3x .300 Blackout CBJ ammo pack (50 pcs)
  • 3x 5.56x45 Magpul PMAG 40 GEN M3 STANAG 30-round magazine
  • 1x SIG MCX .300 Blackout assault rifle

The MCX ranks highly on our list of meta weapons in Escape from Tarkov right now, so you'll definitely want to try it out in-raid if you haven't had the chance to already.

This isn't the last task in this series of quests though, so make sure to get it done as soon as possible before the event expires!

Head over to our Escape from Tarkov homepage for more tips, including all of the best ammo, best armour, best crafts for the highest profit, and the best settings to use if you're looking to increase your FPS and visibility.

Harry Boulton
About the author
Harry Boulton
Harry is a Guides Writer at GGRecon, having completed a Masters of Research degree in Film Studies. Previously a freelance writer for PCGamesN, The Loadout, and Red Bull Gaming, he loves playing a wide variety of games from the Souls series to JRPGs, Counter-Strike, and EA FC. When not playing or writing about games and hardware, you're likely to find him watching football or listening to Madonna and Kate Bush.
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