Permanent Eraser allows you to securely erase your files. When you normally delete files on the Mac, the operating system is only forgetting where those particular files are placed, while the data still physically remains on the drive. Beginning with Mac OS X 10.3, Apple enhanced its security by introducing the Secure Empty Trash feature, which follows the U.S. DoD pattern of overwriting data seven times. This feature was then later removed in OS X 10.11 El Capitan.
Permanent Eraser provides additional wiping methods such as the 3-pass DoE or 35-pass Gutmann algorithms. This utility overwrites your data multiple times, scrambles the original file name, and truncates the file size to nothing before Permanent Eraser finally unlinks it from the system. Once your data has been erased, it can no longer be read through traditional means.
How is Permanent Eraser used?
- Erase the Trash: Double-click on the Permanent Eraser icon, and it will erase the contents of your Trash.
- Erase selected files: Select the files to delete in the Finder, and drag them onto the Permanent Eraser icon. Permanent Eraser will then only erase those specific files.
- Erase optical discs: Select a rewritable optical disc (CD-RW or DVD-RW) and drag it onto the Permanent Eraser icon to completely write over the disc’s data.
What are the advantages of using Permanent Eraser over Mac OS X’s Secure Empty Trash feature?
- Security – The Secure Empty Trash feature uses the US DoD method of overwriting files 7 times, whereas Permanent Eraser uses the Gutmann Method which uses a special pattern to overwrite files 35 times.
- Tracking – Permanent Eraser shows the real-time progress of the files while they are being erased, but the Mac Finder’s progress bar updates only after an entire file has been deleted.
- Flexibility – Mac OS X only securely erases files that are in the Trash, but Permanent Eraser can erase individual files and rewritable discs as well as the files in the Trash.
- Legacy Support – Secure Empty Trash and Erase Free Space were removed in OS X El Capitan, but Permanent Eraser continues to provide these capabilities for computers which still use mechanical hard drives.
Download: Permanent Eraser 2.9.1