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Using Truecrypt to secure erase Hard Drives?

post #1 of 8
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I checked around about this and didn't find any info. I am selling a few hard drives and of course want to wipe them clean of passwords and banking info. Most of the info I found is using programs to pass over the hard drive for hours on end. Such as DBAN or kill disk.

Wouldn't using True-crypt also get the job done but just a lot faster? If you have a fast CPU with AES-NI it only takes me about 85 minutes to fully encrypt the hard drive. You can also use windows while its encrypting in the background. After its done and you have the drive fully encrypted just quick format the drive in 10 seconds and its ready to sell and wiped clean.

This seems a lot faster option unless I am missing something? Any thoughts would be appreciated.
post #2 of 8
Use DBAN. I use it all the time at work and I'm working for one of the world's largest banks.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darik's_Boot_and_Nuke

EDIT: I should mention that when the drives are wiped, a third party shreds the drives afterwards. We don't resell our hard drives.
    
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post #3 of 8
Using TrueCrypt would be similar to using any disk wiping tool with random data and a single pass. If that is secure enough then you still would have it easier running other disk wiping utilities. The reason the other utilities take hours is because they run multiple passes to ensure the data is wiped. TrueCrypt assumes you'll be overwriting those regions with other data, it was not meant for data wiping.

Depending on what kind of data you had on the drive though, if it was very sensitive the drives shouldn't be resold anyway.
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post #4 of 8
encrypted is not wiped though...if there was something there it would be possible for them to break the encryption. I don't think many people would mess with it though. If I got it I would probably try just for the fun...I certainly would not do anything with any info though.

Still, seems like a silly risk to save your self an hour of zeroing out a drive. Just put it going and walk way. Or do have like a whole pile of drives to do?
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post #5 of 8
A single round of zero writes should be faster that TrueCrypt....
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post #6 of 8
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Thanks for the replies. I know true-crypt isn't wiping the drive but I figured the person would have to be able to break AES encryption to be able to steal anything and that seems unlikely.

I should just do a 3 pass with CCleaner then or use windows to zero fill instead of true-crypt.
post #7 of 8
I use the Seagate HHD tool from DOS to wipe a drive, but I am sure there all sorts of ways to do it.

I think the Windows version of it will do the full erase as well...or at least destroy the MBR till it can't be recovered
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post #8 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sysop82 View Post

Thanks for the replies. I know true-crypt isn't wiping the drive but I figured the person would have to be able to break AES encryption to be able to steal anything and that seems unlikely.

I should just do a 3 pass with CCleaner then or use windows to zero fill instead of true-crypt.
Any encryption method will have to read as well as write sectors, while zeroing the drive require only writing the sectors. So there's no way that even hardware AES can be faster.

Zeroing the disk in just one pass will erase the data so well that nobody but intelligence agencies and big national labs can still read the data, and then only at a snail's pace -- i mean hours per sector, at best.
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