The ethics of data destruction


The Clinton e-mail deletion scandal is quite a mess.    Now it is becoming clear what company and what product was used to delete those files.  The product is called bleachbit  and a good explanation of it is over at a minerdetail.com.

Bleachbit is an opensource program.  It is given away freely to anyone who wishes to use for any purpose.  I personally had not heard of them until I read about them on the aforementioned website.  While I have no problems with them giving away their software, I use a fair amount of free software in the operation of this company, their trumpeting of their usage of their software to stifle a known criminal investigation bothers me.  I know they are using this for traffic and distribution visibility.

There is another data destruction distribution out there called DBAN.  It has the same purpose as bleachbit.  There is one very very important difference though..DBAN, unlike bleachbit, does not go trumpeting their software users nor use cases.  DBAN also has never proudly announced that their software has been used in the commission of a crime.(AKA destruction of evidence in a criminal investigation).

All software can be used for good or ill but when it comes to free software vendors ones with at least the ppearance of some kind of ethics are the ones i use.  Bleachbit will never have the opportunity to flow across my network nor will I ever use it…even if it is superior to DBAN in functionality.  Sometimes you have to take an ethical stand and I refuse to work with a software vendor that knowingly and publicly celebrates the fact they aided in the commission of a crime to potentially cover up the possible commission of an even bigger criminal offense that was under current investigation.

ETC Maryland will NOT condone or aid in the destruction of data that is required for forensics or any kind of law enforcement investigation into possible or known criminal conduct.