Reliably Erasing Data From Flash-Based Solid State Drives

Sarad AV jtrjtrjtr2001 at
Wed Mar 2 09:48:04 PST 2011

Here is more

SSD firmware destroys digital evidence, researchers find
Forensic analysis of drives by investigators now uncertain

Full :


--- On Fri, 2/18/11, Sarad AV <jtrjtrjtr2001 at> wrote:

> From: Sarad AV <jtrjtrjtr2001 at>
> Subject: Reliably Erasing Data From Flash-Based Solid State Drives
> To: cypherpunks at
> Date: Friday, February 18, 2011, 3:01 PM
> This may be of interest
> Abstract:
> Reliably erasing data from storage media (sanitizing the
> media) is a critical
> component of secure data management. While sanitizing
> entire disks and
> individual files is well-understood for hard drives,
> flash-based solid state
> disks have a very different internal architecture, so it is
> unclear whether
> hard drive techniques will work for SSDs as well. We
> empirically evaluate the
> effectiveness of hard drive-oriented techniques and of the
> SSDsb built-in
> sanitization commands by extracting raw data from the SSDbs
> flash chips
> after applying these techniques and commands.
> Our results lead to three conclusions:
> First, built-in commands are effective, but manufacturers
> sometimes implement
> them incorrectly.
> Second, overwriting the entire visible address space of an
> SSD twice is
> usually, but not always, sufficient to sanitize the drive.
> Third, none of the
> existing hard drive-oriented techniques for individual file
> sanitization are
> effective on SSDs.
> This third conclusion leads us to develop flash translation
> layer extensions
> that exploit the details of flash memorybs behavior to
> efficiently support
> file sanitization. Overall, we find that reliable SSD
> sanitization requires
> built-in, verifiable sanitize operations.

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