I have an Android mobile (Galaxy S3), and am really worried that my corporate information will be retrieved after a reset. I've seen shared video showing it is possible to recover data after hard reset.

Mac has an interesting format option, i.e., to write zeros all over hard disks (lengthy but effective). Is it possible to perform such formatting on the Android phone? And how?

  • A magnetic hard drive has to be written over several times, best with random data. Flash memory can simply be zeroed once. – Matthew Read Apr 3 '13 at 15:09

There is an app for this called Secure Deletion for Android, which can be used to overwrite the data. Another way to obfuscate the data would be to encrypt the device before using factory reset. This encrypts all your data, and after the device is reset, it will be very unlikely that the data can be recovered.

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  • Any recommended encryption application? – sys_debug Apr 3 '13 at 13:39
  • 2
    Newer Androids have encryption built-in, just go to Settings -> Security -> Encrypt phone. – onik Apr 3 '13 at 13:55
  • Excellent mate. Great info – sys_debug Apr 3 '13 at 14:01
  • @onik is it possible to programmatically carry out a total "wipe" off? I plan to change my phone and there's a trade in policy. So I want a full wipe off. – aspiring Dec 17 '14 at 15:03

I can personally recommend free Forever Gone (SD Card Cleaner).

It is not paid app and it has:

  • much better rating
  • no suspicious permissions
  • 100x times bigger user base
  • often updates
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