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Encrypt Your Sensitive Data before Wiping It !


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#26 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 10:44 AM

yes my En anglais is not quite good but seems I understand better than you when I read..you are wrong for the cinquecento times here..maybe u didnt read this:

*(They point out that the long time required for multiple wipes "has created a situation where many organisations ignore the issue all together – resulting in data leaks and loss)

and maybe u didnt read the tutorial itself..cuz it doesnt speak about encryption before data..it speaks about encryption after data..and thats the main difference that makes what jamal pointed out in his tutorial is absolutly true. sorry wonko
:cheers:

#27 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 11:08 AM

Look, you (and jamal of course, and everyone else) are perfectly free to encrypt your data just before wiping it. :cheers:

If you like doing it, I am happy for you. :cheers:

Is this needed? NO.
Will it decrease the chances of recovering anything after the wipe? NO.
As already said, you cannot decrease 0 chances.

Mr. Guttmann did a theoretical work that may have had some usefulness some 15 years ago, with the drive technoilogy in use at the time.

Notwithstanding this, there is NO actual evidence of even a single byte EVER recovered after a single wipe pass.

BTW, Mr. Guttmann NEVER said that the 35 passes were necessary, READ the actual paper:
http://www.cs.auckla...secure_del.html
particularly:

In the time since this paper was published, some people have treated the 35-pass overwrite technique described in it more as a kind of voodoo incantation to banish evil spirits than the result of a technical analysis of drive encoding techniques. As a result, they advocate applying the voodoo to PRML and EPRML drives even though it will have no more effect than a simple scrubbing with random data. In fact performing the full 35-pass overwrite is pointless for any drive since it targets a blend of scenarios involving all types of (normally-used) encoding technology, which covers everything back to 30+-year-old MFM methods (if you don't understand that statement, re-read the paper).


A number of people read this purely theoretical work as actual proof that in practice data was recoverable.
Unfortunately there has NEVER been ANY evidence that this is possible, not even after a single 00 pass.

Check the But ... then, why? in my signature. :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko

#28 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 12:56 PM

Look, you (and jamal of course, and everyone else) are perfectly free to encrypt your data just before wiping it. :cheers:
If you like doing it, I am happy for you. :cheers:

Check the But ... then, why? in my signature. :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko

look u whatever is ur name or position here in boot-land..I have a name when u want to reply to me..u just cannot disrespect the members here just because u'r the founder..that means nothing to me at all..nobody needs to prove anything to u..it's already proven that encryption is the only way to destroy data..whether u like it or not..believe it or not..that's ur problem..and what's in ur signature?didnt c anything other than a work of usual script kiddo whom thinks himself smarter than the rest of the world..no regrets for my words to u..until u prove u became a better respectful person towards others..and learn how to speak.. :cheers:

#29 barin6588

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 12:57 PM

Look, you (and jamal of course, and everyone else) are perfectly free to encrypt your data just before wiping it. :cheers:

If you like doing it, I am happy for you. :cheers:


Check the But ... then, why? in my signature. :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko


Ahhh;it's wonko the sane again with bad attitude;hmmm...just a typical Italian arrogant mossolini;even when he knows he's completely wrong; by the way I checked that BUTT.... in your signature; guess what? I found nothing there but a stinky A.....HOLE with no Attitude..

#30 steve6375

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 01:24 PM

I am sure Wonko did not mean to be rude or disrespectful. This whole debate is about Jamal's tutorial and he wrote...

The first step is the perfect and ultimate GO SAFE & GREEN solution other than physically destroying your hard drive with a sledge hammer and increase the earth pollution, is to encrypt that hard drive before engaging any wipe method, so it is not possible to recover your data after wiping it, and all what will be recovered is an encrypted data, that is impossible to know what it is and impossible to decipher, this is what I personally do, before I get rid of an old hard drive by donating it or by passing it to a friend, or selling it on eBay, or even if I want to use the same hard drive again as a clean and empty hard drive with no previous data on it, and today I am going to show you how:


So he is clearly under the false impression that data can be recovered after a sector has been overwritten. This is what Wonko and I and some others fundamentally disagree with. Overwriting sectors does make the data in those sectors unrecoverable. Therefore encrypting a drive before wiping all sectors is pointless. Also, if encrypting a drive makes it secure, then why bother to wipe all sectors afterwards anyway?

So the tutorial is misleading (even though it is a nice tutorial on how to run TrueCrypt).

#31 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 01:32 PM

if encrypting a drive makes it secure, then why bother to wipe all sectors afterwards anyway?
So the tutorial is misleading (even though it is a nice tutorial on how to run TrueCrypt).


thank u steve6375 for answering..I will accept wonkos exuse about his words..not urs..u have no hands in this..with all my respect to u.. and about encryption drive makes it secure..u r right to ask why the need of wiping? we all know encryption is the ultimate solution to destroy data..but maybe jamal added the wiping after is to ensure that even the encrypted data will not be recovered? maybe this is the only reason i c here.. :cheers:

#32 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 01:39 PM

Actually I am trying to say that everyone is free to think whatever he/she thinks fit and behave accordingly.

No desrespect intended towards anyone. :cheers:

Only pointing out the futility of doing things unneeded.

It's interesting how barin6588 managed to become member only to attempt offending me, BTW also mis-spelling the name of Benito Mussolini.

Benito Mussolini was a dictator, i.e. someone that wanted other people to do what he saw fit.
I am saying exactly the opposite, not only everyone is perfectly free to do whatever he wishes, I will also feel happy for them if they feel happy in doing that. :cheers:

But this won't change the foolishness of encrypting data just before wiping it.

As said, I would be very happy to find evidence that ANY data has EVER been recovered after a single wipe, I would be grateful if anyone can point me to any such evidence.

:cheers:
Wonko

#33 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 02:08 PM

Actually I am trying to say that everyone is free to think whatever he/she thinks fit and behave accordingly.

No desrespect intended towards anyone. :cheers:

Only pointing out the futility of doing things unneeded.

But this won't change the foolishness of encrypting data just before wiping it.

As said, I would be very happy to find evidence that ANY data has EVER been recovered after a single wipe, I would be grateful if anyone can point me to any such evidence.
:cheers:
Wonko

u say u do not disrespect others but ur words say different..and as i said b4 and also jamal said that to u..no one is supposed to bring u any evidence..cuz we simply know it..and more if u look back at the tutorial u would c the answer for urself..search for it and u will c it..the results speak for themselves.

#34 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 02:34 PM

As said originally, the Tutorial is very well made, IMHO. :cheers:

Part of the infos in it are NOT accurate, still IMHO.

I reserve the right to express my opinions on the contents of something posted on this - like every other - board of which I am a member.

You may like or not like these opinions.

Just as you reserve the right of not agreeing with me, I do reserve the right of not agreeing with you.

This is part of a discussion.

I am asking for evidence, ANY evidence that ANY data has ever been recovered after a single wiping pass. (this would prove the claims that encrypting before wiping decreases chances of recovering).

If you prefer, I am unable (and have been unable in the last 10 years) to find any such evidence.

The scientifical method requires a theory - any theory - to be proved.

Without such evidence, you will continue claiming that data can be recovered after a wipe and I will not believe it, and point out the futility of doing uneeded things.

:cheers:
Wonko

#35 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 02:51 PM

I am asking for evidence, ANY evidence that ANY data has ever been recovered after a single wiping pass. (this would prove the claims that encrypting before wiping decreases chances of recovering).

If you prefer, I am unable (and have been unable in the last 10 years) to find any such evidence.

The scientifical method requires a theory - any theory - to be proved.

Without such evidence, you will continue claiming that data can be recovered after a wipe and I will not believe it, and point out the futility of doing uneeded things.

:cheers:
Wonko


Jamal was clear in his reply..obviously he has more expertise than u simply..that actually r proven in Wikipedia..and no one is or need to prove anything to u first place..u need to re-read Wikipedia several times maybe so u understand that encryption is the only method to demolish data..u r simply unbearable with ur useless talk..no offence although i feel the desire to :cheers:

#36 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 02:58 PM

so u understand that encryption is the only method to demolish data


Now I understand. :cheers:
The only way to demolish data is encrypting it.
Sorry, I missed this.
But then why wiping it after having encrypted it? :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko

#37 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 03:06 PM

Now I understand. :cheers:
The only way to demolish data is encrypting it.
Sorry, I missed this.
But then why wiping it after having encrypted it? :cheers:
:cheers:
Wonko

i told u to read wikipedia..seems u didnt read it yet..ok i will copy it for u..as its obvious what in jamal's mind if u read this part of the wikipedia (Encryption
Encrypting data before it is stored on the medium may mitigate concerns about data remanence. If the decryption key is strong and carefully controlled (i.e., not itself subject to data remanence), it may effectively make any data on the medium unrecoverable. Even if the key is stored on the medium, it may prove easier or quicker to overwrite just the key, vs the entire disk.
Encryption may be done on a file-by-file basis, or on the whole disk. Cold boot attacks are one of the few possible methods for subverting a whole-disk encryption method, as there is no possibility of storing the plain text key in an unencrypted section of the medium. However, even this is unlikely and difficult to execute in a non-laboratory situation, as a cold boot attack requires immediate network access to the computer and is only possible within several minutes or even seconds of the system being depowered, depending on the kind of random access memory used. Even then there is still the possibility of the key itself being scrambled or otherwise protected, which may make even this method fail.
Other side-channel attacks, like the use of hardware-based keyloggers or acquisition of a written note containing the decryption key, may offer a greater chance to success, but do not rely on weaknesses in the cryptographic method employed. As such, their relevance for this article is minor.) :cheers:

#38 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 03:30 PM

Sure, that part is all fine and dandy. :cheers:

But it covers encryption (by itself, which IS good :cheers: ).

The tutorial is about encrypting data as a means to increase the security of the wipe.

The point is that once data is wiped it is UNrecoverable, i.e. wiping it with one single pass is ALREADY 100% secure.

Stiil Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia....ki/Data_erasure
http://en.wikipedia....erwrites_needed

an actual research paper:
http://books.google....-...p;q&f=false

I'll try again:
  • encrypting is OK
  • wiping is OK
  • encrypting before wiping does NOT change the probabilities of recovering data, which are 0.

BTW, same applies for physically shredding the media:
you have 0 chances of recovering anything after a HD has gone through one of these:
http://www.ameri-shr...hard-drive.html
you don't need to encrypt the HD or wipe it before inserting it in one of these machines.
You can do it, but it doesn't change anything.

:cheers:
Wonko

#39 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 03:51 PM

Sure, that part is all fine and dandy. :cheers:
:cheers:
Wonko

u need to read this agian..its very clear that jamal wanted us to wipe the data to eliminate any of the following concerns no matter how minor the possebility is
by using wipe after encrypt is to close any possible gap of what mentioned below=
(Cold boot attacks are one of the few possible methods for subverting a whole-disk encryption method, as there is no possibility of storing the plain text key in an unencrypted section of the medium. However, even this is unlikely and difficult to execute in a non-laboratory situation, as a cold boot attack requires immediate network access to the computer and is only possible within several minutes or even seconds of the system being depowered, depending on the kind of random access memory used. Even then there is still the possibility of the key itself being scrambled or otherwise protected, which may make even this method fail.
Other side-channel attacks, like the use of hardware-based keyloggers or acquisition of a written note containing the decryption key, may offer a greater chance to success, but do not rely on weaknesses in the cryptographic method employed. As such, their relevance for this article is minor)

Edited by Master of Disaster, 29 November 2010 - 03:58 PM.


#40 dog

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 04:40 PM

and then smash it up with a hammer
burn the pieces
launch the ashes in a rocket
into a black hole

You can do it, but it doesn't change anything.



#41 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 05:05 PM

and then smash it up with a hammer
burn the pieces
launch the ashes in a rocket
into a black hole

hahahahah.. u made my day dog..so sweet of u..yes this is the best of the best way to demolish data..but if we need to go green as jamal mentioned..then we follow his method..encrypt and then wipe for maximum assurance.
hahaha..thank u dog.u really made me laugh. :cheers:

#42 steve6375

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 05:44 PM

FYI - The current UK Gov regulations for Education/schools/colleges/Uni's etc. says that any hard disk should be erased using Level 5 (write all 0's in one pass) before disposal or recycling.

#43 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 06:22 PM

I am pretty sure that degaussing a USB stick has proved pretty much ineffective. :cheers:

Let me get this clear, you have from confidential sources that US government security experts are studying this very thread on boot-land? :cheers:

Let's wait until your confidential sources will be hopefully allowed to come into the open and the new jamal's standard for secure data deletion will be finally adopted worldwide. :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko

#44 Icecube

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 06:33 PM

yes steve6375 am aware of that..but am talking DOD/NAVY/CIA/FBI?DOS..etc of highest security levels..they r soon to approve jamal's method in early 2011 as expected..soon the world will follow..starting all EU countries also very soon after that... :cheers:

hahahaha.

What is the use of all this "secure" wiping, if you all sensitive info leaves via the frontdoor?

On Sunday 28th Novembre 2010, Wikileaks began publishing 251,287 leaked United States embassy cables, the largest set of confidential documents ever to be released into the public domain. The documents will give people around the world an unprecedented insight into the US Government's foreign activities.

The cables, which date from 1966 to the end of February this year, contain confidential communications between 274 embassies in countries throughout the world and the State Department in Washington DC. 15,652 of the cables are classified Secret.

To access the Cable gate, go to http://cablegate.wikileaks.org

Please donate to WikiLeaks to defend this information.

At 5pm EST Friday 22nd October 2010 WikiLeaks released the largest classified military leak in history. The 391,832 reports ('The Iraq War Logs'), document the war and occupation in Iraq, from 1st January 2004 to 31st December 2009 (except for the months of May 2004 and March 2009) as told by soldiers in the United States Army. Each is a 'SIGACT' or Significant Action in the war. They detail events as seen and heard by the US military troops on the ground in Iraq and are the first real glimpse into the secret history of the war that the United States government has been privy to throughout.

The reports detail 109,032 deaths in Iraq, comprised of 66,081 'civilians'; 23,984 'enemy' (those labeled as insurgents); 15,196 'host nation' (Iraqi government forces) and 3,771 'friendly' (coalition forces). The majority of the deaths (66,000, over 60%) of these are civilian deaths.That is 31 civilians dying every day during the six year period. For comparison, the 'Afghan War Diaries', previously released by WikiLeaks, covering the same period, detail the deaths of some 20,000 people. Iraq during the same period, was five times as lethal with equivalent population size.

Please donate to WikiLeaks to defend this information.

http://wikileaks.org/

I am pretty sure that this leaked documents don't come from disposed government PCs.

BTW, encryping your files before wiping doesn't make it safer. Writing random patterns to the disk would be even safer (assuming that you can even recover any info after a simple zero wiping pass).

#45 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 06:34 PM

I am pretty sure that degaussing a USB stick has proved pretty much ineffective. :cheers:

and the new jamal's standard for secure data deletion will be finally adopted worldwide. :cheers:

:cheers:
Wonko

do i smell jealousy here wonko the sane? if u have a better method simply post a tutorial so the world know it and maybe implement it instead of jamal's method that already if only theoretically u just read it and compare the facts u would immediatly say that this is the top solution right after physically destroying the data storages.
yes it will be emplemented jamal's method..u should be happy as a bootlad founder.. :cheers: not be negatively upset(jealous) :cheers: or am i wrong?

#46 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 06:42 PM

do i smell jealousy here wonko the sane?


Well, if you smell jealousy you have a nose problem.

If you smelled eager expectance, you would be right.

In a nutshell you affirmed that right now US governement security experts are studying jamal's method and that - according to your confidential sources - this method will soon be adopted as a new standard BOTH in US security agencies AND all over the world in early 2011.

This is a prediction.

Since it is nearly december 2010, we can wait and see if your confidential sources were accurate.

:cheers:
Wonko

#47 Icecube

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 06:55 PM

Her some real and useful info about how to properly wipe sensitive data from a hard disk:

Q: What is secure erase?

A: The ANSI T-13 committee which oversees the ATA (also known as IDE) interface specification and the ANSI T-10 committee which governs the SCSI interface specification have incorporated into their standards a command feature known as Secure Erase (SE). Secure erase is a positive easy-to-use data destroy command, amounting to “electronic data shredding.” It completely erases all possible user data areas by overwriting, including the so-called g-lists that contain data in reallocated disk sectors (sectors that the drive no longer uses because they have hard errors in them). SE is a simple addition to the existing “format drive” command present in computer operating systems and storage system software and adds no cost to hard disk drives. Since the Secure Erase command is carried out within a hard disk drive it doesn’t require any additional software to implement.

Q: Is secure erase approved for government security?

A: Secure erase has been approved by the U.S. National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST), Computer Security Center1. In general data erasure techniques when used alone are approved by NIST for lower security sanitization (less than secret) since the data can be recovered at least in theory. It should be noted though that a secure erased drive that is then physically destroyed would be extremely difficult if not impossible to recover data from. According to the NIST document Secure Erase as well as certain software utilities running in protected execution environments (e.g. running inside file system hardware like RAID arrays or inside secure computers) could be verified secure.

Q: Is any data left after a secure erase?

A: Investigations at CMRR at UCSD have shown that a single pass secure erase at lower frequencies results in no remaining data signals and a second erase reduces this signal only slightly more. The resulting data signal to noise ratio (SNR) at the magnetic drive head is below that required to recover data using a disk drive channel2. The only recorded signal left in these experiments is a small amount of highly distorted track edge recording which is extremely difficult to recover data from even if the disk is removed from the drive and tested on a spin-stand.

Q: Is there a fast way to do secure erase?

A: an ATA disk drive user may want to do a "Fast Secure Erase" on a disk drive before disposing of it. ATA disk drives can have a user "password" that is used to access certain features of the disk drive. If a secure erase is started using a user "password" the disk drive must complete the secure erase before it accepting any other command. Even if SE is stopped before completion another user cannot acquire the drive and use the "password" to reactivate the disk drive. The SE must complete before the new user can access the drive.

http://cmrr.ucsd.edu...0212008_000.doc
Average time

Sanitization type				for 100 Gbytes	 Security Comments

OS file deletion				 Minutes			Low	  Deletes only file pointers, not actual data; data recovery possible

															 through common commercial data recovery software.

Block overwrite (DoD 52203)	  Up to a half-day   Medium   Now obsolete; needs three writes and one verify; might not erase

															 reassigned blocks; multiple cycles leave other vulnerabilities.

NIST 800-88 secure erase (SE)	30 minutes		 High	 Performs in-drive erase of all user-accessible blocks.

								 to three hours

Enhanced SE					  Milliseconds	   High	 Executes SE of in-drive encryption key.

Physical or magnetic destruction Seconds to minutes Highest  Required for top secret data and above.

Clearing utilities are often designed to meet US
Department of Defense document DoD 5220,3 which
defines a “clearing and sanitization matrix” requir-
ing two fixed-character overwrites and one random-
c haracter overwrite, followed by a verify read.
However, progress in hard drive technology has ren-
dered DoD 5220 obsolete. All drives today use partial
response-recording channels, a technology that ran-
domizes user data before recording, so the first two
writes of DoD 5220 no longer function as intended.

The US Defense Security Service today requires that
federal agencies using overwrite utilities have an au-
thorized DoD laboratory evaluate them for proper
functionality.3 NIST 800-88 replaces DoD 5220 for
disk sanitization.

G.F. Hughes, D.M. Commins, and T. Coughlin, “Disposal of disk and tape data by secure sanitization,” IEEE Security and Privacy, Vol. 7, No. 4, (July/August 2009), pp. 29-34.

http://ieeexplore.ie...snumber=5189548
http://cmrr.ucsd.edu...ionTutorial.pdf

Center for Magnitic Recording Research (CMRR):
http://cmrr.ucsd.edu...cureErase.shtml

#48 Master of Disaster

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 07:56 PM

sorry guys..anyone goes against this top method (encrypt then wipe)of jamal is a loser in this discussion..sorry guys :cheers:

#49 Nuno Brito

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 08:22 PM

In Portugal there are also worries about sensitive data, but I can't say most government organizations are so zealous about data when compared to the US or UK. Looking on wikileaks you see little references for Portugal, meaning that our effort is indeed balanced when compared to the scarce amount of references about our country.

Also, when considering sensitive data I note that HDD's were just one of the worries. More dangerous would be enforcing control on the network traffic, usage of USB drives and even control of paper printing for confidential data.

I never had to wipe out a HDD with such rigorous procedures. Sensitive HDD's got broke after some years and we'd just store them in a safe location if they had been used at a server machine. They'd be shipped for destruction after a some time and we'd be rid of them.

Seldom times saw the need for encrypting resources such as images or plain documents. If it was sensitive data, having this information available as a file was already a security compromise that should be avoided in the first place. A lot of investment was made since 5 years to this part into making distributed apps that wrote nothing on disk.

This type of procedure helps to prevent leaks but not a perfectly safe method as you might imagine.

:cheers:

#50 Icecube

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 08:37 PM

Jamal was clear in his reply..obviously he has more expertise than u simply..that actually r proven in Wikipedia..and no one is or need to prove anything to u first place..u need to re-read Wikipedia several times maybe so u understand that encryption is the only method to demolish data..

Why would encrypting the data first (one pass, with some gibberish, which isn't that gibberish in you have the key), be safer than just overwriting the whole disk/partiton with random bytes?

Note: Rhetorical question




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