I have been working on a paper dealing with how data is stored, deleted, and recovered on hard drives for the last few weeks. In the course of my research I found this paper which covers this subject more eloquently than I could ever hope for.


Below is the opening paragraph as a preview.

Just because you don't see it doesn't mean it's not there. By having a knowledge of something that exists, but is hidden from your sight, will give you an advantage because you know it's there. In the security field it is very important to keep up to date on the latest information available. If you don't, someone will take advantage of your ignorance. Things are always changing and becoming bigger, better, faster and sometimes sneakier. A few years back in my Information Technology career I made the change from Desktop Support to the Information Security Group. Since then I have learned a tremendous amount about security. I have learned that you have to train yourself to think differently about things, add a little paranoia. This paper will address two security concerns that I found very interesting. They both have to do with things that are not in plain sight. The first security concern covers the issue of retrieving data that has been deleted. So many people have no idea about data that is left behind when you delete files or fdisk and format your hard drive. The second issue deals with hidden access and control of your computer. I will look at what a rootkit is and look at the recent development of rootkits designed for Microsoft Windows operating systems.