Privacy and security has become a huge concern in recent years with many more cases of identity theft and fraud than ever before. Some criminals even buy computers from recycling centers and garage sales with the intent on stealing information and possibly an identity. There is lots of information on your PC, and unless you take the right steps, some of it can be extracted from your hard-drive.
If you’ve ever thought about selling, or sold your old laptop or desktop, you probably thought about if your personal information would be secure. The answer is maybe – as long as you do it right!
Files erased through the Recycle Bin – even if empties – are tremendously easy to find and recover. Erasing all the information on your hard-drive is a safer alternative, and can take some time, but is worth it in the long run.
- Back up all your information – you can use the built-in Windows backup tool in your Control Panel, or the Windows Easy Transfer tool.
- Insert your Windows disc and reboot your PC.
- Boot up from your Windows install disk and follow the prompts to reinstall.
- When given the option, erase all partitions, or agree to wipe the drive before re-installing.
- Continue to install a fresh copy of Windows on your drive.
This process is not theft-proof, but it is far better than dragging things into the Recycle Bin. The only fail-safe alternative is to replace the hard-drive with a brand new one, or download disc nuking tools. There are free ones available online, and the famous “Hiren’s boot CD” includes several to choose from.
These computer tips made available by $69 PC Repair.
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