Very worried, please help.

Wyognim

New Member
I don't know if this is in the correct section or not, but please help with this.

I bought a PC, put my files on it etc. It broke and before sending it to repairs I deleted all sensetive stuff (passwords, pics etc) with Psendumon number (more than 2 passes atleast, maybe 3-4?, not the default one) generator and even Gutman 35 passes, then some 7 passes. A mix, but I think the most important things with Psendonum number generator (excuse me if it's wrongly spelled) I also deleted the partition and quick installed XP over it then deleted the partition again and sent it in.

I am sure perhaps they have done atleast one OS install on that PC to make sure it works, but let's assume they haven't. Now since fixing the PC takes time they have given me a new one forever and they are going to fix the other one and what they are going to do with it I don't know - perhaps sell it again or one of employees buy it half price or something when it's fixed and I am worried maybe somebody gets all my data on it. The company is not like a homemade company, they have stores and many employees and many products etc so they are serious.

How bad is it? Can they get the files easily..?

This was done in late June using the Eraser released around that time. I didn't touch any settings. the HDD was new and modern.
 

Joel

Active Member
Well nothing would be cleaner than using DBAN or any of those low-level disk wiping utilities, but since you've made an effort to clean it, while it doesn't guarantee your complete safety, it would definitely have been better than not doing anything at all. Especially when you consider that from within Windows, to clean every single nook and cranny will require getting rid of the OS. It's like trying to vacuum the dust out of a hairline crack in the wall.

Joel
 

Wyognim

New Member
Joel said:
Well nothing would be cleaner than using DBAN or any of those low-level disk wiping utilities, but since you've made an effort to clean it, while it doesn't guarantee your complete safety, it would definitely have been better than not doing anything at all. Especially when you consider that from within Windows, to clean every single nook and cranny will require getting rid of the OS. It's like trying to vacuum the dust out of a hairline crack in the wall.

Joel
Thanks for your response! I'd do a DBAN, but back then I didn't know about it.

Can I ask what psenduomgenerator does really? What worries me here also I read some topics about Eraser not working. I know it can't gurantee me completely safety but I think it's atleast good enough for someone who buys the PC and uses some regular restore softwares? Especially considering they have to install OS too on it when they get it and that I have reformated it myself (quick reformat) etc so it's more and more being written over. I also deleted A LOT of other stuff when securly deleting some files so surely they must have overwritten them?

Well I think it's better than nothing! Do you have any suggestions what I can do now? I am going to change all my important passwords just to be safe as a start.
 

Joel

Active Member
Wyognim said:
Can I ask what psenduomgenerator does really?
It uses a seed of some sort to generate more random data. Basically to use limited entropy to create more entropy.

Wyognim said:
What worries me here also I read some topics about Eraser not working. I know it can't gurantee me completely safety but I think it's atleast good enough for someone who buys the PC and uses some regular restore softwares?
It really depends on your threat model. You should see those threads to see what actually goes on and decide for yourself there.

Wyognim said:
Especially considering they have to install OS too on it when they get it and that I have reformated it myself (quick reformat) etc so it's more and more being written over.
Not really, NTFS and Windows has a way of writing where they seem to like. Quick reformats only overwrite the MFT, if memory serves.

Wyognim said:
I also deleted A LOT of other stuff when securly deleting some files so surely they must have overwritten them?
Not at all, the simple deletion will only remove pointers to the file. Until the disk space is overwritten it still can be retrieved from disk.

Wyognim said:
Well I think it's better than nothing! Do you have any suggestions what I can do now? I am going to change all my important passwords just to be safe as a start.
Yes, you can do that. If you are really really paranoid then you can go call up your bank and ask for new credit cards in case you have your CVC or credit card number somewhere on the disk.
 
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