Give away old tower

15 pts.
Tags:
GIVEAWAY
SAFETY
TOWER
Am I safe giving away an old tower to a lady who needs one?

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  • TomLiotta
    Safe? Safe from what? -- Tom
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  • jayemes
    Hi Tom, Can the person I give this tower to get any of my business figures off it.  I have not used it for a few years.  This is the reason I have not sent it to the rubbish tip.  Thanks for your help
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  • TomLiotta
    If business figures are stored on it, then figures can be retrieved from it. However, the risk is vanishingly small if the simplest steps have been taken. Can you reinstall the OS (probably including fixes)? If so, then format the drive and reinstall. A professional might still retrieve some data, but you can probably judge the likelihood of anyone going to any serious effort. You could be more certain with more effort. -- Tom
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  • carlosdl

    Take a look at this interesting article, here on ITKE:

    Paranoid About Hard Drive Security? Try This

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  • Kevin Beaver
    This piece may prove helpful as well:
    http://searchdatabackup.techtarget.com/news/1365706/Secure-data-destruction-options-for-old-backup-tapes-and-disk
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  • TomLiotta

    If precautions aren't taken, file fragments and even some whole files can usually be recovered. Usually, the larger the file, the less likelihood that anything more than fragments can be reconstructed. Whether it's worth any effort or not can only be determined by you.

    If you're storing actually valuable business secrets that some nefarious persons are seeking, then it's probably worth some extra effort. What is the likelihood that some industrial spy is going to track and obtain the system for analysis? Or is there legally restricted private info about customers that needs to be protected?

    There is the theoretical possibility of data recovery. And there is also the practical view of some uninterested 'lady' applying recovery techniques in order to extract data bits.

    At the first level, simply deleting files might be enough. Much of the data bytes could still be recovered, with less and less being recoverable as the PC is used in the future. The data is not recoverable without using some software utility that is designed to do it. The ability to recognize the meanings of recovered data also decreases as usage continues.

    But if no attempt at recovery is done, nothing will be recovered. If you bury something in your back yard, it's not going to be found unless someone actually starts digging around. By simply looking at the yard, you can't tell if something is underground. In the case of deleted files on disk, there isn't even a visible scar like what might be left after refilling a hole.

    We can't really judge "safety" in your case without knowing what might need to be protected.

    Tom

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