How to Wipe your personal data before selling it (For PC/Mobile/Router/eBook reader)

Whether you’re selling a computer / mobile or just wanting to reinstall an OS from scratch,you definitely want to make sure all of your personal data, including your photos, messages, and files are wiped before sending it to new owner.In this post we’ll learn How to Wipe your personal data before selling it.

#1.Personal Computers

Step #1. Download DBAN Utility

You can also use WinImage self extractor to install DBAN on to USB flash device.

Use WinImage to install DBAN on to USB device
Image — Use WinImage to install DBAN on to USB device

Step #2: Make DBAN Bootable disc

Step #3:Start DBAN

DBAN home screen
Image — DBAN home screen

WARNING: DBAN is about to irreversibly erase all the files on all your hard drives, so be sure to choose appropriate options this step and the following ones.

Step #4: Choose drive to wipe the data.

Choose drive to wipe data
Image — Choose drive to wipe data

Step #5: Choose Wipe method.

DBAN supports following wipe methods

  1. dod
  2. dodshort
  3. ops2
  4. gutmann
  5. prng
  6. quick

DBAN recommends using the dodshort command but you can use any of them that you think is appropriate. Usually quick method would be the best option to choose when you’re not sure on what to choose.

Choose Wipe Method
Image — Choose Wipe Method

Step # 6: Erase the disc

DBAN Progress
Image — DBAN Progress

Step #7: Wait for DBAN Succeeded Message

DBAN Verification
Image — DBAN Verification

At this point, you can safely remove the disc or USB device that you’ve installed DBAN to, and then shut down or restart your computer.

#2.iPad,iPhone or iPod touch

  1. Launch the Settings app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Now tap on General.
  3. Scroll all the way to the bottom and tap on Reset.
  4. Tap on Erase All Content and Settings.
iPhone Erase All Content and Settings option
Image — iPhone Erase All Content and Settings option
  1. Tap on Erase iPhone.
  2. Tap on Erase iPhone again to confirm.
  3. Enter your Passcode.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password to turn off Activate Lock and remove the device from Find my iPhone.
Erase iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
Image — Erase iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

#3.Android Phone/Tablet

To avoid this kind of scenario,you can encrypt the data. This is built in option and requires you to enter a PIN or password every time you turn your phone on. For anyone to recover data from your phone they would need key to decrypt it.

Step#1.Encrypt Data

On an encrypted device, all personal data gets encrypted. This includes things like your email, texts, contacts, Google Account data, app data, photos, media, and downloads. Some non-personal data, like file sizes, aren’t encrypted.

To learn more about Full Disk encryption,please check out here.

Step#2.Factory Reset

When the Reset is done, your phone will be wiped and any data that could be recovered will be encrypted and should be impossible to decrypt the same. It’s now safe to sell or pass it along to someone else.

Below is video on how to reset your Android Phone :


  1. Make sure your router plugged in and powered on, hold down the reset button for 30 seconds.
  2. While still holding down the button, unplug the router from the power source for another 30 seconds.
  3. Continue to hold reset button, turn the power back on and hold for yet another 30 seconds.

Post the above steps,your router should be restored to its factory default state. Post reset, you can log in to it with the default IP address and username/password combination that it was configured with when it was first purchased.

There are also options provided in Router admin panel,once you login & in the Advanced settings page you would be able to delete the log or reset the router.

#5.eBook Readers

For example, To perform reset on Kobo Reader follow below steps :

  1. Turn on your eReader.
  2. Press the Menu button.
  3. Press the centre of the Navigation pad.
  4. Select Settings.
  5. Press the centre of the Navigation pad.
  6. Select Advanced.
  7. Press the centre of the Navigation pad.
  8. Select Reset Device Now.
  9. Press the centre of the Navigation pad.
  10. Once the eReader is powered up again, set the date and time.

For Kindle reader,follow below steps :

  1. From Home, tap the Menu icon, and then tap Settings.
  2. Tap the Menu icon again, and then tap Reset Device.

Hope I have covered some of the key parts in securing your personal data before selling it.If I have missed out anything,please post it comments section.

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Originally published at @upnxtblog.



Author | Digital Solution Architect | Blog | My K8s Book

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