Mac users have it good when it comes to security, right? No viruses or spyware to speak of, right? Right. But what about your Mac’s files? They’re on a hard drive. When you give away an old Mac do you erase the hard drive’s contents? That’ll destroy all your files, right? Wrong.
Even completely erasing a Mac’s hard drive won’t destroy all your files. In fact, even emptying the Trash on your Mac won’t destroy files unless you take an extra step or two, and some of those steps are gone in Mac OS X El Capitan. That’s how hard disk drives and SSDs work. They store data and keep it available even when you erase the drive. What you need is a quick, easy, painless solution to destroy files. Like AlienDestroyer.
Destroy vs. Shred
Mac OS X has a number of ways to get rid of files and folders. The Trash. Drag and drop a file to the Trash, then Empty Trash. Done, right? Not quite. In reality, your file is still on your Mac, sometimes long after you’ve erased it or emptied the Trash. All your Mac did was take the name off the door, but what’s in the closet is still there.
In the Finder menu you’ll find a few options. One is Empty Trash, which isn’t secure. Older versions of OS X had Secure Empty Trash, which would overwrite a file many times, to ensure it cannot be reconstructed. The same problem holds true with external hard drives, FireWire or USB, even USB flash drives, or camera memory cards. All need to be securely erased to actually shred and destroy their respective files.
Why would you need to securely erase your files? Whenever your Mac goes in for repair, or if you sell or give away your Mac, all your data is still on the hard drive, even when you erase it. AlienDestroyer is one of a number of nifty handy Mac utilities which make it easy to so thoroughly destroy files that they cannot be reconstructed. Even Abby Sciuto would have a hard time digging up evidence from a shredded hard drive.
The process for destroying files is rather simple and painless. Drag and drop is your friend. AlienDestroyer will overwrite specified files and folders many times, which deletes them well beyond the possibility of recovery.
AlienDestroyer is simple to use. The interface has a toolbar on top and bottom with one click options for cleaning your browser’s cache, making hidden files visible, purging temporary files, fast wipe, shred, fire destroy, and fire destroy with zero blocks.
When you’re ready to destroy a file or folder of files, drag and drop to AlienDestroyer. A big poof cloud appears and the files and folders are listed between the toolbars.
Select what you want to destroy, and click the appropriate toolbar button. Zap. Pow. Gone. Even hard drive forensic experts will be hard pressed to figure out what was on your Mac, but it also works on USB drives, USB flash drives, even flash pens, memory cards, and, yes, your iPod.
AlienDestoryer actually works faster than the Mac’s old Secure Empty Trash, and throughly shreds files on other devices. This is a utility that even the paranoid will love. After all, if people are out to get you, paranoia is the right attitude to have.