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Using Secure File Removal

The System Cleaner can permanently remove files in a "shredding" process, which overwrites them with random characters. This shredding feature is a convenient way to make sure no one can ever access your files with a recovery tool. (Although you may think that you are permanently deleting files when you empty the Recycle Bin or when you use Shift-Delete, in actuality, you are only removing the operating system's record of the file, not the physical file itself.)

To use Secure File Removal:

  1. Open the main interface.

  2. Click System Tools, the System Cleaner tab, then the Secure File Removal link.

    CleanupPanelSFRlink.png

    The Secure File Removal panel opens. By default, file removal is set to "Normal," which means items are deleted permanently (bypassing the Recycle Bin). However, data recovery utilities may be able to restore the files.

    CleanupSettingsSFR.png

  3. If you want to make sure files can never be recovered, move the slider to Medium or Maximum.

    "Medium" overwrites files with three passes, whereas "Maximum" overwrites files with seven passes and cleans the space around the files. Also be aware that cleanup operations take longer when you move the slider to Medium or Maximum.

  4. Click Save All.