i'm wondering what are the best programs for removing everything from harddrives. programs somewhat like fdisk but better. any help would be greatly appreciated. and if there are any free ones that would be better.
I once worked for a large financial institution (a bank) involved in only one thing, destroying data on hard drives. This proved to just about impossible as even after the drive has been destroyed and the platters smashed (even after reformatting many times) it’s still possible to recover the original data albeit very expensively. Some agencies using scanning electronic microscopes and a huge mainframe (designed for this single purpose) habitually carry out these functions and there are many government agencies with fingers in this pie. However as pointed out by MOSAD and other agencies it’s easier and quicker just to monitor and record what individuals are typing in to whatever system by the keyboard or mouse before it gets encrypted or to just record the magnetic flux of the monitor (CRT) in use i.e. look at the pictures.
This can be done easily by a van parked in the near vicinity of the target.
If you think you can hide anything on a PC think again!
Remember this: - you need to destroy the magnetic properties of the platters inside the drive. Throw the drive platters into an acid bath (sulphuric) and hope that someone has not already obtained what they want. No format or re-partitioning will help you.
are you throwing the drives away? or whats the deal? just want them formated? you can get a scrubber which will write info to your HDD like all zero's then go and erase it then write all one's to it then erase it and do it over and over again tell you feel its safe enough to throw away. and after a few hours of this it will be fairly safe unless who ever wants the info off of it has millions of dallors and a year or two of there life to spare to get maybe a fragment of something like a love letter or whatever you may have on your pc (p0rn!) that you don't want some one to know you have. other then that the only way I see to completely get rid of the info on the disk would be to destroy itmelt it down or something to that effect. so just try a scrubber 99% chance no one will ever be able to recover info from it unless there rich and REALLY want small file fragments or whatever.
Originally posted by Dave Holbon Remember this: - you need to destroy the magnetic properties of the platters inside the drive. Throw the drive platters into an acid bath (sulphuric) and hope that someone has not already obtained what they want. No format or re-partitioning will help you.
if you got it near a really strong electromagnetic field it could more then likely pull all to the polaritys of the platters WAY out of whack but then again throwing it onto the ground really hard will do that to. ever rubbed a screw driver on a magnet to get it to pick up screws? then drop it and have it not be magnetic anymore? pretty much the same deal
I suppose that the point is (as already outlined by others), is that even overwriting data three or four times using whatever method does not destroy the data, it can still be recovered but only by the few. For most operations using readily available scrubbers or a low level format is usually good enough. Methods of recovering data from hard drives (say in a fraud cases or national security issues) by certain agency’s even if the data was previously encrypted before it was written to the drive is possible and does not involve years of CPU cycles. However as already mentioned the re-format will do for 99.999% of the time.
If you wan't it safe then don't put it on a computer.
Originally posted by Dave Holbon I suppose that the point is (as already outlined by others), is that even overwriting data three or four times using whatever method does not destroy the data, it can still be recovered