A newly published study by Britain’s data protection regulatory agency found that more than one in 10 second-hand hard drives being sold online contain recoverable personal information from the original owner. “Many people will presume that pressing the delete button on a computer file means that it is gone forever. However this information can easily be recovered,” Britain’s Information Commissioner, Christopher Graham, said in a statement. In all, the research found 34,000 files containing personal or corporate information were recovered from the devices.
Along with the study, a survey revealed that 65% of people hand down their old PC, laptop and cell phones to others. One in ten of those people who disposed of their old devices left all their data on them. The British government also offered new guidelines for ensuring devices are properly wiped of data. Although, some might argue that if you want credit card numbers, just get a job at any restaurant as a waiter.