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Secure file deletion

Recuva can recover files you've deleted normally and delete them again using industry-standard secure deletion methods.

This is useful if you've deleted confidential information on your PC through Windows Explorer or by emptying the Recycle Bin. These types of deletions are 'weak' - any determined hacker can quickly restore the contents of those files.

If you're looking for a freeware solution that can securely delete files and protect your privacy, speed up your PC, and clean out the junk in Windows, be sure to check out our companion product, CCleaner.

Note: When CCleaner securely deletes files, it renames them with all Zs in the file name (for example, ZZZZZZZZ.ZZZ) for increased security. Since Recuva is recovering files that have already been deleted, it cannot change their names before it overwrites them.

Recuva has four different levels of secure deletion. The higher the security, the longer it will take to delete files. For more information on setting the level of secure deletion, see the topic Options: General tab.

Warning: You cannot recover files once they have been securely deleted.

To recover files and delete them securely:

  1. Run Recuva in Advanced or in Wizard mode.
  2. In the results window, select the files you want to securely delete.
  3. Right-click the list and click Secure Overwrite Checked.
  4. You are prompted to confirm the deletion. Click Yes.

Note: Windows 98 does not support secure file deletion.