Properly erasing Prohibited, Restricted, and Confidential data from your Mac is vital to Stanford data security. Mac OS X has a simple built-in function called "Secure Empty Trash" that will permanently erase data in the Trash using Department of Defense standards, effectively making data recovery impossible. The normal method of emptying the Trash only makes data "invisible" and the data can often be recovered with widely-available software utilities.
Note: "Secure Empty Trash" takes much longer than the normal "Empty Trash" method due to data being overwritten multiple times.
Mac OS X 10.4 or later
- Place restricted or confidential data you wish to permanently remove in the Trash.
- From the Finder menu, select Secure Empty
Trash… to permanently erase items in the Trash.
- A dialog box will appear to confirm permanent deletion of data in the Trash.
Click OK to continue.