Questions tagged [deletion]

Secure deletion of data.

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Use explicit_bzero() to zero entire memory

Functions like bzero(), explicit_bzero() and ZeroMemory are designed to delete sensitive data from RAM (Like keys). Can I use explicit_bzero() to delete entire RAM (e.g. 2 GB RAM)? Is this a feasible ...
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142 views

Erase RAM while device is on [closed]

Is there anyway to get rid of the data in RAM without powering off the system? or better to say how we can reduce the chance of getting meaning full information from the volatile memory while the ...
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1answer
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Securely erase leftovers of files from the bin in OSX

I have made a mistake and deleted a sensitive file by placing it on the bin, and then empty the bin in OSX 10.12 (Sierra). I have heard this is not a secure way to delete sensitive files. Is there a ...
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1answer
119 views

How to completely remove all traces of a file on Linux? (Overriding everything if needed)

How can I delete a file and completely remove it from the system FOREVER. I does have in mind that it's needed to override it. But how can I do that?
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1answer
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Is disk wiping required for full disk encryption if that disk was encrypted before?

It is generally recommended to safely erase the content of a disk before encrypting it, to avoid some forensic attacks. But is it necessary when that disk was encrypted before ? Wouldn't the data ...
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2answers
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wipe encrypted disk by nulling the first few bytes?

If I encrypt a whole partition with AES, is it secure to just overwrite the first few bytes of the partition in order to make it completly unreadable even if an attacker knows the passphrase to access ...
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716 views

BIOS rootkit : Computrace and Wiping SSD HPA on Linux + protect it with custom encryption

My primary goal is to close firmware backoors. First, I want to know if my plan might work or not, and if it is a good idea, how to implement it: I erased preinstalled Windows and installed Linux ...
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1answer
121 views

Are there any real life scenarios where usage of the Gutmann method is appropriate? [duplicate]

Peter Gutmann himself wrote the following: If you're using a drive which uses encoding technology X, you only need to perform the passes specific to X, and you never need to perform all 35 ...
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2answers
389 views

Is using video editing software to fill SSD with junk video secure?

I'm about to sell an old 128GB external SSD, and I've read various guides saying it's difficult to be sure that data is erased when using traditional zero-fills etc. I'm on Mac OSx, and I got the ...
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1answer
2k views

Privacy data concern: Facebook account appearing with a search for phone number, despite it never being added - what should I do? [closed]

Something that's concerned me recently is "doxing" or the searching for and posting of personal information. Recently I carried out essentially an audit of my personal security online and discovered a ...
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2answers
260 views

Should I wipe my device when leaving the company? [closed]

I'm leaving my company soon. Only one person in the whole company has admin-rights on client machines and does the reinstalls. To save time only the old userprofile gets deactivated and a new one ...
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1answer
436 views

Is it safe to rm -rf an untrusted directory?

There are a lot of linking tools(symlinks, hard links, mount, etc.) available. Suppose a disgruntled employee gets the idea that he's going to hide a link to the root directory or some mission-...
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2answers
229 views

Is there a portable memory device with an offline erase technique? (such as an erase switch?)

I know about the USB devices that have a write protection switch that disables writing on the device side, are there devices that have a similar hardware switch that permanently erases the devices ...
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4answers
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Can live bootable usb be infected by malware on hard disk?

I have an old hard disk which I think has every kind of malware on it, maybe even MBR malware. It is also possible that there is malware for Linux on it too, because the disk is a dual boot Windows XP ...
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4answers
301 views

Is encrypting whole drive with a randomly generated key better than erasing?

I was trying to find better ways of quickly deleting files in such a way that they cant be recovered at all. Is encrypting drive with a completely pseudo random key using some block chain better than ...
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0answers
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Has there been a documented case of someone recovering information from an HDD that was wiped with ATA Secure Erase?

hdparm --security-erase NULL /dev/sdx The above Linux command tells the disk to wipe all of the data on the drive irrecoverably. Googling, I find a few examples of people saying that ATASE has been ...
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1answer
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How secure is manually over writting files?

Say I have 100 image files, all different names, I batch rename them 1-100.jpg, I then change the extension of all the files to .txt. I then make 100 blank text files and over write the converted ...
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1answer
2k views

Securely deleting files from inside a Veracrypt volume

My question relates to this old thread on the Veracrypt forum (I didn't get any response when I posted there, so here I am): https://sourceforge.net/p/veracrypt/discussion/general/thread/bf48efbd/ I ...
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1answer
6k views

Does Amazon S3 deletion “shred” your object

I believe Amazon states that all deletions of objects are irreversible. But for security reasons, how "shreded" is such deletion? For example, supposing a hack to Amazon S3, could anyone recover your ...
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1answer
371 views

Best current methods for preventing data leakage from SSD

I'm wondering about the current best practices for ensuring data confidentiality on an SSD used as an OS boot drive (under Linux). Important considerations are: Ensures against data leakage in the ...
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2answers
737 views

Is storing CVV in two parts separately a violation of PCI?

I was going through the integration documents of a payment processor, and as per my understanding of the code, docs and disassembly, they are doing the following: Encrypting the CVV on the server-...
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0answers
97 views

Product Verification System [closed]

I'm thinking about a system that will allow my end users to verify their products with the manufacture key/imei number. I'm planning to check that key against my information saved in server and let ...
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1answer
435 views

Safe erase of a Toshiba SSD with Absolute Secure Disk software

I have a SSD drive extracted from a crashed laptop which seems to be working, but it's got a Absolute Secure Disk sofware which asks for password when I try to boot from the drive or denies any access ...
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1answer
166 views

Security of deleted files and their traces

I refer to the following link: Deleted files and their traces I am trying to ensure security of deleted files when copying from one machine to another. The original poster asked if simply copying ...
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1answer
574 views

Is Windows 10's TRIM implementation secure

In terms of data deletion everyone knows that once you delete something from your harddisk it stays there, and is recoverable, until it is overwritten. With classical spinning harddrives, the best ...
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4answers
918 views

How to check whether the erase was secure enough?

Edit: this is not about how to securely erase, but how to check whether the erase was secure enough. I have over written my SSD with very large video files, in order to overwrite any sensitive data I ...
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3answers
3k views

How to erase as much as possible an SSD without ATA Secure Erase?

The question is almost completely answered. However, more details are still needed. See Update 2 down here. I've learnt that the ATA Secure Erase is uncorrectly implemented in SSDs (sources are down ...
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2answers
137 views

Data 'dust' left over other than on the HDD?

I was working on a project which contained very classified information. I am now planning on using the computer for personal work but I'm worried that replacing the HDD won't be enough. Is there any ...
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3answers
5k views

How secure is Secure Erase option in BIOS?

I have been exploring data security lately and came across HDD data recovery. I now know that a format simply deletes the "pointers" to files and directories and that data is still there. The only way ...
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1answer
285 views

User ID Soft Delete or Hard Delete?

Is there any particular reason (security) for us to implement Soft Delete Mechanism on Deleting User ID or Hard Delete. I am trying to make my user id better for my web application thank you.
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1answer
120 views

How to respond to a user requesting deletion of their online account [closed]

My website occasionally receives requests from users asking for their account to be deleted. The website itself is a dating site that stores messages between users, personal information they add to ...
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3answers
695 views

Is file shredding effective in a virtual machine?

I understand that people with a need to make sensitive data unrecoverable use file shredding to achieve it. This means writing over the physical areas of the storage media in more or less ...
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2answers
414 views

Chances of recovery of data from iPhone 5s if memory has been overwritten 35 times?

Use the app 'shredit!' and do the 35 time overwrite. Then you fill the phone with unnecessary data and then reset it to factory settings and erase. What are the chances of recovery of data that was ...
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2answers
453 views

Is data in iPhone “spare” flash memory also encrypted and shredded?

First I'd like to ask is flash memory used in an iPhone? If yes then please answer my next question. Flash memory uses wear levelling (changing the physical location on the memory of a logical ...
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5answers
497 views

How to securely sanitize data tapes, and audit the results?

I work at an electronics recycling facility and we were just presented with an offer from a client that would like to buy our used data tapes. Our problem is that we have never sanitized data tapes as ...
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0answers
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Windows disk write - does short write fill whole cluster?

Suppose I have a Windows program that writes to a hard disk. The hard disk has physical sectors of 512 byte length. These sectors are accessed as clusters of 4 kilobytes each. Therefore, each cluster ...
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3answers
4k views

Is there a real-world example of SSD data recovery?

Secure data deletion is known to be more complicated and elusive on a solid-state drive than for a regular hard drive. For instance, the logical block mapping on the SSD's flash translation layer ...
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2answers
91 views

Are deleted files more or less likely to be overwritten than blank space?

Let's say that I have some files on a hard drive (the data for each file is represented by a different letter): xxxoooozzzz--------------------   Now let's say that I delete file Z without ...
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3answers
232 views

Live OS : secure file deletion

In the case of a Live OS (i.e Tails) where filesystems are kept in RAM, is there any difference in the way a file is deleted ? Specific case considered : files "1.jpg" and "2.jpg" in a running Live ...
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3answers
330 views

I am leaving my company. I have been asked to leave my company laptop and a password to access it. What should i log out of

I have been asked to leave my company laptop with a password(which I will change and share) to access it. The reasons for this have been explained to me and are invalid, alas. I am going to assume ...
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1answer
2k views

Can completely overwritten data be recovered? [closed]

Can data that has been completely overwritten ever be recovered regardless of device unless it is an SSD? By completely overwritten I mean that if data is written to a device for 2 years continuously ...
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2answers
394 views

Is it secure to overwrite unencrypted files with encrypted ones?

If I have a text file on my desktop and I encrypt it (as in replace it with an encrypted version, not create a secondary file) will the old file still be recoverable? In other words if you replace the ...
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3answers
569 views

Why use random value when overwriting files?

Often when I see people talking about safe deletion, I see lots of advice's that you should use random values to overwrite. My question is why is it better or more efficient than filling all bytes ...
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3answers
2k views

How to delete one exe file that is probably malware?

I stupidly saved an .exe file that claimed to be an urgent Firefox patch (318K). I haven't (and won't) run it, but how can I delete it so that it's gone, i.e. no risk to my Win7 laptop? I thought of ...
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1answer
172 views

Write to selected disk location to overwrite deleted file

I know that every file on a computer is written to a specific disk location. Using Python I want to locate the file and overwrite it in order for it to be impossible to retrieve it. Using an SSD I ...
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0answers
120 views

Are deleted offline calendar events in Android actually deleted?

When an Android app deletes a calendar event in a local (offline / non-synced) calendar, does Android's Calendar Storage (com.android.providers.calendar) actually delete the event or does it just flag ...
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1answer
492 views

How do I wipe a disk that DBAN can't read?

I have a Samsung 850 SSD that has recently been dying on me -- there appear to be some memory issues. I'm considering sending in the drive for replacement under the warranty program, but it contains ...
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3answers
2k views

Are files deleted before encrypting then formatted able to be retrieved?

On a drive I have a folder of files, I then just soft delete these files (not wiping them or overwriting with any data). After I soft delete them I encrypt the drive and wipe it with a single quick ...
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1answer
777 views

How to securely delete full vm

We have a Windows 7 virtual machine on VMware Workstation 11. The VM is now encrypted (using Workstation) but wasn’t always. The VM has confidential information on it and as we no longer need it, we ...
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2answers
2k views

Can a full SSD or HDD recover deleted data?

I've always been curious. It may be a stupid question but what if you deleted a file then filled up the SSD or HDD. Could your deleted data be recovered or is it physically impossible? I know Windows ...