Wipe it free: secure wiping software

By Ashton Mills, CSO Online (Australia) |  Security

Acronis is popular for its consumer and corporate backup tools, but it also has a disk wiper product called Drive Cleanser. Annoyingly, it requires a driver and reboot during install (just for wiping?). However, it's quite flexible, providing more than just the standard fast algorithms, DoD, and Gutmann by allowing you to completely build your own custom wiping method and data that gets written. It also has a boot-disk generator so you easily boot-and-nuke (to coin Darik). Drive Cleanser has a 15-day trial, and otherwise costs $US61 per machine.

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East Tec Dispose Secure--www.east-tec.com

East Tec's Dispose Secure comes with a bootdisk maker, like other tools here, but importantly here it's required for operation--the actual wiping too tool is console-based only. All the standard methods are there, as well as some new combinations (like its own 3+7+3 wiping method). Interestingly, it also comes with a 'Network Sanitiser' which uses PXE to remotely wipe machines based on MAC address or through connecting to the network, making it possible to easily wipe a large number of machines without leaving your seat. The trial version only wipes 1/4 of the drive; the full version needs to be purchased at $US24 to do a full wipe.

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Iolo Drive Scubber -- www.iolo.com/ds/3

Iolo's Drive Scubber has one of the nicer interfaces we've seen, and backs this up with plenty of 'More Info' buttons for most of the options, making it a good choice for first timers. It supports wiping from Windows or generating a boot disk for full-disk wipes, and can wipe multiple drives at once, or optionally clean only free space. Interestingly (and refreshingly) it's one of the few products to offer only one method--the DoD 5220.22-M technique. Even so, it lets you optionally set the number of passes, or set your own pattern. It also comes with a 'Desktop Incinerator' which basically functions as a Recycle Bin but uses its wiping algorithm on deleted files. The trial version is limited to three uses, with the full version costing $US50 for a 3-machine license.

Clean Disk Security--www.theabsolute.net/sware/#clndisk

Clean Disk Security, despite its name, can't actually wipe disks or individual files. But it's worth covering here because it's closer to CCleaner in function--emptying the recycle bin, cleaning browser caches, deleting histories, purging cookies and so on--with the added benefit of securely wiping data once it's removed (something CCleaner doesn't do). It sports the ability to tailor the number passes for a simple wipe, but provides two other modes, including Gutmann. While not useful as a tool to wipe whole machines, it may serve some use for individuals wanting to remove data on their system that may contain personally identifiable information. Clean Disk Security is shareware.


Originally published on CSO Online (Australia) |  Click here to read the original story.
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