19 Effective Open-source Free File Shredder and Secure File Deletion Applications for Guaranteed Permanent File Deletion

19  Effective Open-source Free File Shredder and Secure File Deletion Applications for Guaranteed Permanent File Deletion
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A file shredder and file eraser app is a software tool designed to securely delete files from a storage device. When files are deleted using the regular delete function, they are often still recoverable with specialized software. A file shredder or file eraser app uses advanced techniques to overwrite the data of the file multiple times, making it virtually impossible to recover.

Benefits of using a file shredder or file eraser app include:

  1. Security: By securely deleting files, you ensure that sensitive information cannot be accessed by unauthorized individuals, protecting your privacy and preventing potential data breaches.
  2. Compliance: In certain industries or jurisdictions, there may be legal requirements to securely erase sensitive data. Using a file shredder or file eraser app helps ensure compliance with these regulations.
  3. Protection from identity theft: When you dispose of a device or sell it, it's important to securely erase all personal and sensitive data to prevent identity theft. A file shredder or file eraser app helps you completely remove your data from the device.
  4. Peace of mind: By using a file shredder or file eraser app, you can have peace of mind knowing that your deleted files are irrecoverable, reducing the risk of data leaks or unauthorized access.

It's important to note that using a file shredder or file eraser app should be done with caution, as once the files are securely deleted, they cannot be recovered. It is advisable to double-check and ensure that you are deleting the intended files before using such applications.

Who need secure file deletion?

  • Lawyers: Lawyers often deal with sensitive client information and legal documents that need to be securely deleted to maintain client confidentiality and comply with privacy regulations.
  • Doctors: Doctors and healthcare professionals handle patient medical records (PHI) and other sensitive healthcare information that must be securely deleted to protect patient privacy and comply with healthcare regulations.
  • Teachers: Teachers may have access to confidential student information, including grades and assessments, which should be securely deleted to preserve student privacy.
  • Consultants: Consultants frequently work with sensitive client data and proprietary information that requires secure deletion to maintain client trust and confidentiality.
  • NDA Stuff: Anyone involved in handling non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) or confidential business documents should use secure file deletion to prevent unauthorized access and protect sensitive information.
  • Private Individuals: Private individuals may have personal documents or files containing sensitive information that need to be securely deleted to prevent identity theft or unauthorized access.

What is the Gutmann method?

The Gutmann method is a data wiping method that was developed by Peter Gutmann, a computer scientist. It is known for its thoroughness and involves overwriting data with a series of carefully selected patterns, totaling 35 passes.

The Gutmann method was initially designed to securely erase data from older magnetic storage media, but it is considered unnecessary for modern storage technologies.

Modern storage devices, such as solid-state drives (SSDs), employ their own secure erase mechanisms that render the Gutmann method obsolete.

1- Eraser

Eraser is a free secure data removal tool for Windows that completely removes sensitive data from your hard drive by overwriting it several times with carefully selected patterns.

It erases residue from deleted files, MFT and MFT-resident files (for NTFS volumes), and Directory Indices (for FAT). It also offers a powerful and flexible scheduler.

This app is an open-source project that is released under the GNU General Public License version 3.0 (GPLv3).

Eraser – Secure Erase Files from Hard Drives
Eraser
Download Eraser for free. A security tool to remove sensitive data from your Windows hard drive. Eraser is a secure data removal tool for Windows. It completely removes sensitive data from your hard drive by overwriting it several times with carefully selected patterns.

2- File Shredder

File Shredder is a free desktop application that allows you to permanently delete files from your hard drive, making them unrecoverable. It offers multiple shredding algorithms and is considered more powerful than many commercial file shredders.

For comprehensive protection, you can consider downloading ArchiCrypt Shredder or other commercial utilities like Blancco or CyberScrub.

File Shredder
File Shredder is FREE and powerfull aplication to shred and permanently remove unwanted files from your computer beyond recovery

3- Data Eliminator

Data Eliminator [ File Shredder / Disk Free Space Wiper ]
Data Eliminator [ File Shredder / Disk Free Space Wiper ]

Data Eliminator is a safe and fast application for securely wiping out sensitive data. It offers multiple pass options, including Normal 1-Pass, DoD 3-Passes, NSA 7-Passes, and Gutmann 35-Passes, making it impossible to recover the data using hardware or software techniques.

License: MIT License.

GitHub - NIKJOO/FastShredder: Fast & Secure File Shredder
Fast & Secure File Shredder. Contribute to NIKJOO/FastShredder development by creating an account on GitHub.

4- BitKiller

BitKiller enables you to confidently and securely shreds files and directories, completely removing them from your hard disk. It excels at quickly and efficiently overwriting files using a wide range of methods, from random data to the highly secure Gutmann method.

Moreover, it cleverly modifies filenames to make them significantly more challenging to locate. Best of all, there is no need for any setup or installation process.

Key Features

  • Fast and easy to use
  • Can choose from many different overwrite options
  • Drag and drop files onto interface
  • No setup needed

License: GNU General Public License version 3.0 (GPLv3).

BitKiller
Download BitKiller for free. BitKiller securely shreds files and directories, removing them completely from your hard disk. It can quickly and efficiently overwrite files using anything from random data to the Gutmann method.

5- Wiper (command-line)

The Wiper Toolkit is a free and open-source command-line application designed to securely destroy sensitive virtual data, temporary files, and swap memories. It simplifies the process of personal data destruction, making it easier for employees and companies to clean personal data on PCs that will be reused.

GitHub - r3nt0n/wiper: Secure destruction of sensitive virtual data, temporary files and swap partitions
Secure destruction of sensitive virtual data, temporary files and swap partitions - GitHub - r3nt0n/wiper: Secure destruction of sensitive virtual data, temporary files and swap partitions

6- Permadelete

Permadelete is a user-friendly and visually appealing app for permanently shredding files and folders on Windows.

The app is written using C# and it works on Windows platforms.

License: MIT License.

GitHub - DevelopersTree/permadelete: Permanently shreds files, easily.
Permanently shreds files, easily. Contribute to DevelopersTree/permadelete development by creating an account on GitHub.

7- JAFS - Just Another File Shredder

JAFS (Just Another File Shredder) is a free and open-source file eraser and shredder tool for Windows operating system.

License: Apache-2.0 License.

JAFS - Just Another File Shredder
Download JAFS - Just Another File Shredder for free. JAFS Just Another File Shredder is a simple file shredding software.

8- RNG File Shredder

RNG File Shredder is a simple app that securely deletes files by using random number gen cryptography to overwrite the data multiple times, making it impossible to recover. It requires .NET 3.5.

License: Creative Commons Attribution License.

RNG File Shredder
Download RNG File Shredder for free. A Simple App To Securely Delete Files. Permanently wipe files from your computer with RNG File Shredder. This app uses random number gen cryptography to overwrite files multiple times scrambling the data beyond recovery before finally deleting the file.

9- OpenShredder

OpenShredder is a lightweight and useful open-source file shredder project that provides secure file deletion using standard Zero and DoD algorithms. It features file content cleaning and recovery prevention.

License: GNU General Public License version 3.0 (GPLv3).

OpenShredder
Download OpenShredder for free. File Shredder Project. Openshredder is os independent secure file deletion tool.It is very light weight and useful.It uses standard Zero and DoD algorithms.

10- pyCleaner

pyCleaner is a powerful and reliable tool that allows you to securely wipe files or folders and efficiently clean duplicated files. It is a free and open-source software, ensuring that your data remains protected and your system optimized.

Key Features

  • Simple, user friendly GUI.
  • Cross platform.
  • Secure file deletion with multiple passes.
  • Scan directories or whole drives for duplicated files.
  • Choice between secure wiping or normal deletion for dealing with duplicated files.
  • Uses md5 hashing and file size to detect duplicate files.
  • No realistic chance of false positives (see below).
  • Available as a pre compiled Windows binary, or a Python script for Linux in the releases tab.

License: MIT License.

GitHub - MK-Ware/pyCleaner: Securely wipe files or folders and clean duplicated files
Securely wipe files or folders and clean duplicated files - GitHub - MK-Ware/pyCleaner: Securely wipe files or folders and clean duplicated files

11- Turbo Shredder

Turbo Shredder is a free cross-platform file removal tool that securely wipes out files by overwriting data up to 100 times. It requires JRE 7 to run properly.

Key Features

  • Works on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Overwrite data up to 100 times.
  • Overwrite file names and directory names.
  • Deletes timestamps of files and directories
  • Overwrite data with zeros, ones or random data.
  • Supports several deletion algorithms.
Turbo Shredder
Download Turbo Shredder for free. Turbo Shredder securely removes files. Do you want to delete some top secret files? DON’T do that by only pressing DELETE, because the data would still be on your drive!

12- File Nuke

File Nuke is a nuclear file removal tool that completely removes files, ensuring they cannot be restored using recovery tools. It is designed for Windows systems.

License: GNU General Public License version 3.0 (GPLv3).

File Nuke
Download File Nuke for free. File Nuke, the Nuclear File Shredder! Whipe out suspicious data forever with this nuclear file removal tool…

13- ShredBitz

ShredBitz is a free and simple file shredder tool written in Java. It uses a custom algorithm for powerful shredding and can shred up to three files at a time.

ShredBitz
Download ShredBitz for free. ShredBitz is a free and simple file shredder tool that can wipe selected files from any hard disk drive. ShredBitz is written in the java programming language and uses a custom written algorithm for shredding.

14- The File Shredder - Secure File Deletion

The File Shredder is a tool that securely deletes files by overwriting them with custom random data, making it slow but secure. Additionally, the file is given a random name.

License: GNU General Public License version 2.0 (GPLv2).

The File Shredder - Secure File Deletion
Download The File Shredder - Secure File Deletion for free. The File Shredder securely shreds files by overwriting them before they are deleted. Every character in the file is overwritten with customised random data, so it is secure, but a little slow.

15- Raider (Linux)

Raider is a shredding program for GNOME desktop that permanently removes files. While it is effective within limits, the physical writing of data to SSDs at the hardware level means that perfect shredding is not possible. Only top-level agencies with significant resources can recover such data.

License: The GNU General Public License 3 is a free, copyleft license for software and other kinds of works.

GitHub - ADBeveridge/raider: Permanently delete your files
Permanently delete your files. Contribute to ADBeveridge/raider development by creating an account on GitHub.

16- Corrupt

Corrupt is a free and open-source software that securely deletes files using the Gutmann method. With its user-friendly interface and efficient performance, Corrupt is the go-to tool for maintaining privacy and security.

Whether you need to delete sensitive documents or personal information, Corrupt provides peace of mind by securely erasing your data.

GitHub - Naranbataar/Corrupt: Simple and efficient file shredding
Simple and efficient file shredding. Contribute to Naranbataar/Corrupt development by creating an account on GitHub.

17- Shredder - Secure shredding tool (Linux)

'Shredder' is a free secure shredding tool for Linux boxes that allows users to safely erase files. To use the program, simply compile and install it, with no additional requirements other than the Linux kernel, make, and a C compiler.

License: MIT License.

GitHub - 0x00-0x00/shredder: C program to erase files securely overwritting data with random patterns.
C program to erase files securely overwritting data with random patterns. - GitHub - 0x00-0x00/shredder: C program to erase files securely overwritting data with random patterns.

18- File Shredder

File Shredder is a PowerShell script designed for shredding files, but it may not completely prevent file recovery if there is ample free disk space. It has been tested on Windows 10 Enterprise OS (64-bit) with PowerShell v5.1.18362.752 and is intended for educational purposes.

GitHub - ivan-sincek/file-shredder: PowerShell script for shredding files.
PowerShell script for shredding files. Contribute to ivan-sincek/file-shredder development by creating an account on GitHub.

19- DockShredder (macOS)

DockShredder is a GUI application that uses the dd command-line utility to comply with the instructions of the Operating Manual NSIP (DoD 5220.22-M).

However, it is important to note that while DockShredder can make it more difficult to recover data, the only truly effective way to delete data is to physically shred the computer.

GitHub - janalis/dockshredder: File shredder for Mac OS X
File shredder for Mac OS X. Contribute to janalis/dockshredder development by creating an account on GitHub.

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