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Recycled computers


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#1
Bdkdoen

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So I recycled my computer about a year ago at a council recycling centre. Out of convenience, I stupidly overlooked wiping it, although I deleted everything and emptied the recycling bin. What are the odds of my personal data being compromised?
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#2
DonnaB

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Hi Bdkdoen,

Welcome to GeeksToGo! :)

Please note that I moved your topic to a more appropriate forum.

As you might have realized since donating your computer, deleting the files and emptying the recycle bin is not enough. When a file is deleted or a drive is formatted, the files are not completely destroyed. What is destroyed is the information about where the files are stored on your drive. The more you use the Computer once you have deleted the Files, the less chance of recovering them with any program, because the deleted File locations are quickly overwritten. You could think of deleting a file as the same as taking the street numbers off your house. Your house may be a little harder to find, but it is still there.

Take the time to contact the council recycle center and ask them if they reformat donated computers. Most of them do.
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#3
Bdkdoen

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Thanks! I'll do that. But generally, is it logical that if after a year, nothing has happened, the odds of my personal data being compromised are quite low?
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#4
DonnaB

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I would say so, yes, though I would feel more comfortable knowing if the recycle center did reformat their donated computers before they give them to the needy.

Please let me know what you find out.
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