TCCoA Forums banner

1 - 8 of 8 Posts

·
Automatic Weapon
Joined
·
1,219 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
One man's trash...
By Chris Stamper
Simson Garfinkel once forgot to clean out an old hard drive and his father discovered his diary. The mistake led him to try an experiment: buy dozens of used disks and check out their contents. His conclusion: Dumping an old hard drive can be like tossing aside a wallet with the ID still inside.

Mr. Garfinkel and a fellow MIT grad student, Abhi Shelat, trolled through eBay and visited computer shops looking for old hard drives. They paid from $5 to $30 each for 158 of them. Then they dug around for recoverable information.

The pair wrote in an engineering journal, IEEE Security & Privacy, that they found 128 working drives and 69 had recoverable files. Of these, 49 contained "significant personal information." They found corporate memos, love letters, and pornography. The scariest finds were 5,000 credit-card numbers, along with a year's worth of records from an Illinois ATM machine (complete with account numbers).

Techies debate whether users ever can permanently erase data. They agree, however, that destroying a drive (say, with a sledgehammer) destroys the data. The most accepted nondestructive method involves software like CyberScrub, DataGone, and WipeDrive, which overwrite old data with meaningless ones and zeros. Encrypting valuable documents also helps. Mr. Garfinkel and Mr. Shelet argue that software makers should make data destruction easier.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
14,208 Posts
A big magnet like a double voice-coil sub for instance does wonders for magnetic media. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,983 Posts
Big-Al said:

Techies debate whether users ever can permanently erase data. They agree, however, that destroying a drive (say, with a sledgehammer) destroys the data.
Ahhhh the memories. Back in a computer club in a college I was in a couple years ago we actually did that. We had computer parts galore. Mostly old parts. So we were digging through some junk and found some small HDs. I am talking small in how much they hold... they were actually quite old and big. So we took them outside with a hammer and started taking wacks at it. Man those things are tough. It took us a long time and we only got dents in it. The ground under it (concret sidewalk) had more damage to it then the hard drive.

I love destroying electronics in fun ways :D

-Shawn
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,290 Posts
Re: Re: SO who wants to sell me their old hard drive???

Shawn40th said:


Ahhhh the memories. Back in a computer club in a college I was in a couple years ago we actually did that. We had computer parts galore. Mostly old parts. So we were digging through some junk and found some small HDs. I am talking small in how much they hold... they were actually quite old and big. So we took them outside with a hammer and started taking wacks at it. Man those things are tough. It took us a long time and we only got dents in it. The ground under it (concret sidewalk) had more damage to it then the hard drive.

I love destroying electronics in fun ways :D

-Shawn
lol, sounds like an office space moment :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
277 Posts
heh - i was rockin out some Ghetto Boys in the car on the way back from lunch, suitably putting me back into my Office Space mood :]
 
1 - 8 of 8 Posts
Top