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We have a text field that is referenced several hundred times in all code, validation rules, WFRs, etc that we'd like to encrypt now. In order to do that, seems like we need to delete it and recreate it. This is very time consuming to do (see links below)

So, I have an idea as a different approach to the answers provided here:

Change field Data Type without removing all references to said field in Controllers and Classes

and here:

How to change a field type and deploy when field is referenced in code

I'm wondering if the following would work: Going into the sandbox, deleting all the classes, pages, etc, and then deleting the field in sandbox, recreating it in sandbox as encrypted, and then uploading the field (and only that field) in a change set to production. Once done, I can refresh the sandbox. If the data is deleted, will just re-upload via data loader.

What does everyone think, would this work?

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