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Shred and Secure-Delete: Tools for Wiping Files, Partitions and Disks in GNU/Lin

Dec 03, 2008, 08:33 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Gary Richmond)

[ Thanks to steve hill for this link. ]

"After you’ve installed the right operating system—GNU/Linux, of course—secure browsers, rootkit and virus scanners, you might just start to feel secure--and smug. Don’t be. Until you have understood and mastered some of these GNU core utilities to securely delete, shred and wipe files, directories, partitions and whole disks you're not in the clear. Why not?

"In the last year or so the British press has been full of stories about Government departments and individual employees who have lost laptops and flash sticks. Lost in the post, left on train seats, you name it. Not password protected, not encrypted. Nothing, and you can bet they were all running Windows. A wet dream for anyone trading in identity theft or blackmail. This cavalier approach to computer security should come as no surprise. Most people just want to switch computers them on and use them. Security is usually an afterthought—if at all.

""I’m using GNU/Linux mate, I'm alright", you say smugly. Well, you're certainly in a better place than the average non-professional Windows user, that's for sure, but you shouldn't be too complacent. We all know about deleting files, directories or dragging them to the trash can/recycle bin. Gone? Think again. That is only the beginning. If you knew what was really going you might not sleep so well. I will look at what is going on and how to really destroy any offending data from the humblest file to a whole hard disk."

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