Degaussing vs overwriting a file

Researchers discovered three problems with file storage on SSDs: Corporations are obliged by law to ensure the security of sensitive information, otherwise they will face penalties or punishment for non-compliance. Although this process of course is simple in theory, in practice, the vast variation of media formats and magnetic densities makes the correct process quite difficult to achieve.

The data signal to noise ratios, bit-to-bit phase relationships, amplitude variations all become more critical and require more sophisticated electronics to ensure valid error free data recovery.

The Urban Legend of Multipass Hard Disk Overwrite

If you choose this method then you need to make sure there are not hidden or locked partitions to the drive that the software will not cover. Different media demand varying magnetic field strength, therefore the coils that generate the magnetic field will also vary depending on this requirement.

Where media has a security classification, Restricted, Confidential, Secret or Top Secret, a considerably higher energy rating will be required.

Media destruction[ edit ] The pieces of a physically destroyed hard disk drive. Emptying your trash provides no more security.

Erasing SSDs: Security is an issue

Advanced storage systems[ edit ] Data storage systems with more sophisticated features may make overwrite ineffective, especially on a per-file basis. An operating system can remove the pointers on a file or folder within a matter of seconds.

The use of advanced storage technologies may also make file-based overwrite ineffective see the discussion below under Complications. Degaussing often renders hard disks inoperable, as it erases low-level formatting that is only done at the factory during manufacturing.

This rating is measured in Oersteds. Degaussing a Hard Drive An extra step is to degauss the hard drive. That is consistency of erasure. Software overwrite may also be problematic in high-security environments which require stronger controls on data commingling than can be provided by the software in use.

However, some modern degaussers use such a strong magnetic pulse that the motor that spins the platters may be destroyed in the degaussing process, and servicing may not be cost-effective.

VS Security Products have developed an eraser employing "state of the art" technology that uses a rotating coil technique.

Data Removal Recommendations

At a minimum, this will prevent the data from being retrieved simply by reading from the media again using standard system functions. Data users enjoy greater efficiency due to considerably reduced "error rates".

Data erasure through overwriting only works on hard drives that are functioning and writing to all sectors. Bad sectors cannot usually be overwritten, but may contain recoverable information.

Bad sectors, however, may be invisible to the host system and thus to the erasing software. In the case of a computer’s storage, the file’s data still resides in the storage media, until the memory space that it occupies in the storage media gets overwritten by other files’ data.

“I can reformat my computer’s hard disk drive to remove all traces of past data”. As previously mentioned, overwriting is the process of inserting new data into the space that was previously occupied by a now-deleted file.

Most people recommend following the DOD and NIST guidelines to ensure that data is no longer recoverable. Degaussing is the process of using a magnet to destroy the information on the magnetic media.

The drive stores information by setting up a remnant field on a small piece of the drive to represent a one or a zero.

Data Destruction & Degaussing Services

Degaussing doesn’t destroy the remnant field but makes it too slight to read. Degaussing, or demagnetizing, applies a reverse magnetizing field to data stored on magnetic media, erasing the contents by returning the magnetic flux to a zero state.

Overwriting the drive's data so that it cannot be recovered. Degaussing is the process of eliminating data stored on hard drives and magnetic tape, by randomly changing the alignment of magnetic domains on the medium.

Degaussing vs overwriting a file
Rated 5/5 based on 25 review
Data Removal Recommendations | Computing & Information Services