What TrueCrypt actually does is create a partition on your USB which is password protected. This isn't truly password protecting your USB because if someone finds your USB they can delete the partition and continue to use the USB. In that scenario they have your USB but not the information on it. Unless you buy a USB that comes with password protection software, the partition is your best bet.
Not knowing the answer to the question, I would say it's safe to assume your are running a Windows.
I actually use TrueCrypt for my Jump drives and actual hard drives on my laptops.
It works pretty well, just don't forget your password...
Thanks for the ideas everyone.
I have the windows system. From my brief reading, truecrypt requires that the host machine also have the encryption tool installed. But I frequently use a public machine that does not have permission to install anything. Any other thoughts.
windows allows you to password protect your files already
windows me and xp (or higher) lets you compress and lock folders. though its always a good idea to have backups unless youre under NDA or something (then you should get an ftp or just use a dropbox/home made drop box)
also, what kind of file type are you protecting? That can really change what you do!
But i think you should just upgrade to a dropbox! and partition/lock it like most dropboxes allow! (or google drive it!)