Securely Delete Items from Trash on Mac OS X Yosemite

Edited by Grimm, priya, Eng

You're watching VisiHow. In this tutorial, we're going to show you how to securely erase items from the trash on your Mac when running OS X Yosemite.


Steps

  1. 1
    To start with, we're going to navigate down to the dock, so that we can show you the "Trash" can, and explain just a little bit about it. On the far right side, we've got the "Trash". When our "Trash" has items in it that need to be destroyed, we can simply delete them. However, they are only deleted from the hard drive. The record of the file is still there, and the files can generally be recovered with third party recovery software. If we want to securely delete these files so that no one else can easily access or recover them, then we need to add an extra layer to the deletion process.
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  2. 2
    To do this, we need to go to the "Finder". "Finder" is the two colored blue and white smiley face on the dock option. Tap on "Finder" one time.
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  3. 3
    When "Finder" opens up, we're going to go up to the top menu, and click where it says "Finder" in the gray bar at the top of screen. Tap on that one time.
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  4. 4
    Then, we're going to look for "Preferences" and click there one time.
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  5. 5
    When we click "Preferences", a "Finder Preferences" window will appear. We're going to make sure that we are not on "General", "Tags" or "Sidebar" tabs. Instead, we want to be to on the "Advanced" tab, which is a gear-shaped icon.
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  6. 6
    On the "Advanced" tab, we're going to go down to the fourth option, and click "Empty Trash securely". When we've checked the "Empty Trash securely" option, any thing that we delete will be overwritten once it is deleted. This is a very secure way of deleting files. If we need a third party service to overwrite deleted files more than once, then we need something that is beyond the scope of this tutorial. However, to make sure that other people, or someone we might sell our used system to can't easily access our files, this is a more than adequate solution.
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  7. 7
    Once we've checked the "Empty Trash securely" box, we're going to go up to the top left corner, and give a single click to the red circle with the black "x".
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  8. 8
    We can then close the "Applications" Finder window by also clicking on the red circle with the black "x".
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  9. 9
    This concludes our tutorial on how to set up your Mac to securely delete trash items when using Mac OS X Yosemite. Thank you for using VisiHow. We do hope that you have a great day, and that you will leave us any comments or suggestions in the area below.
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Video: Securely Delete Items from Trash on Mac OS X Yosemite

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Categories : Macintosh

Recent edits by: priya, Grimm

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