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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I minimize Securely to the notification's area to keep it always running?
By default, Securely will close and exit when you click the 'X' button on the Securely Window, just like you would expect with most apps. However, if you would like to minimize Securely to the notification's area so it will always run, in the Securely Window, click the 'Settings' button then select the 'Show in notification area' menu item. This will then add a little Securely icon to your notification's area, just click it to show Securely whenever you need it.
I am unable to drag and drop files
Typically this is caused by Windows permissions if you are running Securely as an administrator but you have UAC enabled. The reason for this is that Windows prevents files from being dragged from a lower elevated process such as Windows Explorer to a higher elevated process, such as Securely is you are running it under the administrator account. To fix this, just close Securely and launch it normally from the Shortcut link in 'Start' -> 'All Programs' -> 'Securely' -> 'Launch Securely File Shredder'.
What are the different types of deletion methods?
With Securely you can choose from a number of secure file shredding deletion methods. While all of these methods will securely delete any selected files 100% of the time, some user's feel very strongly about using one method over the other. We feel that the US Department of Defense protocol is very good as it is both fast and proven to work which is why we use it by default.
  • Schneier's Method - The Schneier method is a software based data sanitization method used to overwrite existing information on a hard drive through a seven pass process. The Schneier scheme performs 7 overwrite passes where pass 1 writes high bytes (0xFF), pass 2 writes zero bytes (0x00), and passes 3-7 writes pseudo-random bytes. The Schneier method was created by Bruce Schneier and appeared in his book Applied Cryptography.
  • DOD 5220.22-M Method - This method This data sanitization method was originally defined by the US National Industrial Security Program (NISP) in the document DOD 5220.22-M. Its hardwipe implements this scheme in 4 passes; the first pass writes high bytes (0xFF),the second pass writes zero bytes (0x00), the third pass writes pseudo-random bytes and the forth pass will do a verification check.
  • Guttmann Method - This method uses 35 passes to fully wipe a file from a drive. The Gutmann method was originally designed for a different kind of hard disk than used today and, because of this, its use is probably overkill for modern HDDs. However, it has been seen that increasing the number of passes has been effective in solid state drives, hence the reason Securely still implements it. Like the other data sanitization methods, Gutmann's uses multiple passes to change the data of a file including writing pseudo-random bytes, 0x00 bytes and 0xFF bytes as well as other sequential bytes to the file before destroying it from disk.
  • Paranoid Method - This is our own particular blend of secure file deletion. It uses the Schneier method along with a number of special methods built into windows which allows for any pointers to the file in Windows to be completely removed and orphaned. So in addition to permanently destroying the files itself, this method also destroys any possible links to this file within the Operating System.
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What is a file shredder?
You know you should shred sensitive documents in a paper shredder to protect yourself against data and identity theft. The same is true for data on your PC. Information you erase by formatting your hard drive, or by using your computer's "delete" key is still easily recoverable.
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