I am a privacy freak, and i value my privacy online, as i am sure many here do, so what i need to know is this, is there a folder/folders that contains the information on every site i visit, everything i download, and look at on my computer? If so, where can i find this folder, and how can i delete the contents, or delete the folder? I am running Windows XP Home Edition, serice pack3, on a Dell Dimension 2350 deesktop. Any help is appreciated. Thanks.
I know I'm not an Administrator or anything but, I'm pretty sure this isn't possible.
If you're really a "Privacy freak" and you don't want anybody to attack your system with virus's/Dos/ddos you, then just update your viral systems, and download something with anti-ddos's in it. On-top of it, if you don't run wireless internet, I suggest you get an "IP-Hider" that will hide your IP. WIMI detects these proxy's.
Hopefully this helped.
Since the year 2000 I have been using D.O.D. wiping specs on index.dat which contains all that information you are concerned about.
Here is some info though the same info is available about anywhere since index.dat is a major privacy concern.
"Index.dat file--What is Index.dat file?"
I use Index.dat Suite 2.9.0 and haven't tried 2.11.0
But be very careful since there are quite a few locations of index.dat used by different functions so check each one out first to find out if it is important and if unsure just don't clean it until you do. No hurry, they been there for ages anyway right?
Seems to work good for me and other times I target the files directly for destruction.
Before you trash the main one at:
C:Documents and SettingsAdministratorIECompatCacheindex.dat
as with the others,
save a copy as a text file and search it for all .com, then .org, so on and so forth, you will be surprised at what you see and is a very good home made security tool.
Don't forget the Temporary Internet Folders. In Internet Explorer, you can empty these folders by going to Tools/Internet Options (in some IE layouts, Tools is a small wrench icon, like you see in Google's Chrome Web browser). The Delete option is right there on the General tab. IE 8 has a Settings button to tell it how to manage these files.
As has already been mentioned, however, deletion does NOT render these files unrecoverable. Basically, Windows just deletes the first character of the filename, and then marks the space available for reuse. So the data is still there, and it's not all that hard to get the data out. That's where file wiping comes in.
There are various programs out there that wipe in different ways, and at different levels. For example, there's a program out there called http://www.dban.org Darik's Boot & Nuke. That wipes the entire drive clean. File tables, Boot Records, everything.
"Darik's not kidding about the "nuke" in the name of his program: use DBAN only if you want to completely eradicate any trace of data on a hard drive. This is the ultimate in data shredding--there's no recovery once you've used it."
There are ALL KINDS of programs out there, however, that are more selective. My employer uses a program called http://www.jetico.com BC Wipe. As I recall, it's a fairly expensive license, but they maintain licensing and approval with the US Dept of Defense for DoD's secure systems. Maybe that certification is worth the cost to you. I personally use an Open Source tool called http://eraser.heidi.ie/ Eraser. There are many, many tools that do this. One thing I like about Eraser is the "wipe empty space" option. On big drives, this takes a long, long time. I leave it running overnight on my 128GB drive. And I do that about once a week. This let's me just delete what I want to delete, and then clear it completely when I'm ready. Eraser can also erase the IE data directly. So can several other programs with file wipe utilities.
One final note: SSD's, Solid State Drives, are starting to catch on. Because of how these drives work (how they actually save bits and bytes), file wiping is different. No utility I've mentioned so far can guarantee wiped data is still unreadable on SSD's. At their most basic level, SSD's are essentially enormous flash drives. A *bit* more complicated than that, but close enough. Flash memory uses "cells" in which to store data. Those cells are not normally emptied when data is deleted. Also, because flash memory has only so many read/write cycles, SSD's use a sort of "rotation" scheme to make sure all cells get used over the life of a drive. This means that even a file wiping utility may miss the actual data. "http://gizmodo.com/5489933/leave-no-trace-how-to-completely-erase-your-hard-drives-ssds-and-thumb-drives" Utilities do seem to exist for SSD's, but they wipe the whole drive, not individual files. At least, so far as I've found up to now.
Clearly, it's not a simple issue, not as it might seem at first.