Nothing Is Permanently Deleted, Here Is Why Your Privacy Can Be At Risk.

Picture credit. C.D Johnson

Once you click on a send  button and you saw a sent prompt and or notification of any form chances are that information will be there forever. It might be out of your reach but it is there and will always be there and with the right tools,apps and expertise can be retrieved.

Now read this and read this very important information with all sense of seriousness because this is one key aspect of cyber security most people are not aware of until it is too late.

Let's start by you deleting you a file,clip,message etc from your computer, android, iOS or similar device. Once the message or whatever it was deleted it disappeared from your device but it's saved in a file called recovery file or bin and can be retrieved, then you delete or empty the recovery file or bin and or message from the recovery file or bin same is still saved in your system's hard drive then you wipe your system heard drive this will seem as if you have finally gotten rid of the troublesome file once and for all. If you believe this you're in for a rude shock of your life.

Let's start with the basics, it is very important to always clean information from your recycle bin and hard drives to avoid giving hackers and scammers easy access to your vital information which will be disastrous to you or your organization.

Unless digitally shredded and or completely wiped out from all storage resources your information can be at risk, and even with that nothing is guaranteed, with the right apps and expertise the information can still be retrieved but at a very high cost.

So by deleting information from your computer and recycle bin that info is not entirely deleted  it only give you a space to rewrite another info on the same device and a copy is saved in your hard drive. And that file will remain until it is replaced with another file in that exact same location. Which is not and never 100% guaranteed.

Although depending on the type of hardware in use the data, information might remain intact or a bit distorted but with the right softwares and expertise it can be retrieved. So by wiping the recycle bin and or cleaning the hard drive you reduce the chances of retrieving a particular piece of data or information but the government, top notch criminals or hackers can be able to access it with the right software but it will be very expensive.

The question begging for answer now is how does one permanently delete an information or data?

Well to answer this I will begin with it depends on the hard drive. It is always a good idea to hire the services of a third party professionals who can overwrite your hard drive with any random data so your long forgotten old files will no longer be retrievable even if they are there.

But to absolutely be sure that you have gotten rid of that piece of information better send your hard drive to the crusher or subject it to a good bashing by a hammer regardless as some expert put it "Data sanitization can never be completely guaranteed by any means though retrieving same can be very difficult and very expensive at the same time. 

Deleting online files is a completely different story even though the mechanism for storage is similar  but the risk is higher with online files as a cloud file is created every time a new data is inputted which tends to be more stubborn to erase. This will be a subject for another day, where we will critically examine the nitty gritty of deleting a cloud file and the challenges thereof.

In the meantime always know the type of data you input in any operating system and ask yourself will be comfortable if a stranger have access to such information? Bearing in mind that the said stranger might be a criminal hacker, a government investigator or any random person with less than pure intent.

Before I say goodbye always have this at the back of your mind that whenever you click on a send button on any device online or offline chances are that information will be somewhere lurking for ever and can be retrieved with the right software, expertise and resources so be careful before you send anything, also ask yourself if you will someday have to go through the headache of deleting same file. 

Some experts believe it is possible to completely erase a file from existence but it will be very expensive, are you willing to go through the trouble? A piece of advice always publish something good or be mute. Thanks see you in part 2 of the same article. 

Mohammed Bello Doka is the Chairman and CEO of Abuja Network News he can be reached at

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