How to Erase your Hard Drive
Did you know that when you delete a file from your hard drive it doesn’t actually remove that file? Nope, it removes all shortcuts to it; however leaves the actual file. The file will when eventually be overwritten by another file. I bet you can see the problem here…
What if you are getting rid of your laptop, computer, or hard drive, and need to securely remove all data from it? Well you are in luck. There are a number of free programs that will wipe all free space for you, solving this problem. My favorite is CCleaner.
CCleaner will wipe all free space to any standard you specify. Security standards vary by the number overwrites performed on the disk. Three overwrites are usually sufficient, and is the DOD (Department of Defense) standard for securing hard drives.
On the other hand, if you want to completely wipe all of your info off the hard drive without booting into an operating system, my personal favorite is DBaN (Darik’s Boot and Nuke). This is an ISO you burn to a blank CD- Boot from this CD and it will prompt you with a couple choices for erasing your hard drive quickly and easily. You can download DBaN here- http://www.dban.org/
Now you know how to properly secure all of your personal data quickly.