[clug] Re: More (almost free) stuff. - 3.5" WD 200GB IDE - $10

Hal Ashburner hal.ashburner at gmail.com
Sun Sep 7 10:02:53 GMT 2008

Andrew Janke wrote:
>> Obviously such is not actual proof that recovery from a zeroed drive is
>> impossible. It does suggest that the chances of your identity being stolen
>> if you zero a hard drive and sell it/give it away  at clug are negligible.
> So I can take the colander off now?
Eh, haven't really disagreed with anything in particular you've said but 
I do think you're overstating the case. If you do take the utterly 
selfish "maximise economic value of personal gain" approach the equation 
Sale price of drive - Expected Value of Loss from data recovery > 0
"Expected Value of Loss" is the probability that the drive gets into the 
hands of the deeply malicious multiplied by the probability of them 
having the resources to recover the data multiplied by them having the 
desire to recover the data multiplied by the economic loss to you of 
having the recovered data in their hands.
(Please note that I'm not using selfish in the pejorative sense above, 
being utterly selfish can be the correct approach in many cases and clug 
really isn't the best place for philosophical debate either way.)

Selling/Giving away the drive has an indirect benefit to you, via 
benefit to the community and the world that adds to the sale price.

Disagreeing with me is usually a good way to be right so you want to 
make the case it would certainly make interesting reading at the very 
least. As I say I don't really understand disk drives at any depth, 
maybe you know a theoretical attack on zeroed data at the magnetic bits 
level on the disk?

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