Secure Delete Files: How to Securely Delete Files

Personal information protection is an absolute necessity if you don't want your private information landing in the wrong hands. Therefore, if, by any chance you share your device or are selling it, it's important first to secure your files.

If you're wondering how to go about this, this is where secure delete comes in. The best part is, there are several solutions out there to consider. That being said, protecting your privacy after deleting a file is your responsibility.

The good news is, you can effortlessly do it by following our recommendations, as you'll discover shortly.

What does it mean to securely delete a file?

To securely delete a file can be easily confused for the normal delete. However, there's a significant difference. Therefore, if you securely delete files, it means you're permanently locking out unauthorized access to your deleted files. No one will be able to access files - whether videos, documents or images, after you delete them.

How does it work, you ask? When you securely delete a file, you overwrite the file data with meaningless data, making it a hassle to recover.

On the contrary, the normal delete helps remove files from their storage location only to be accessed through file recovery. So, if you're looking at securely protecting personal information, the normal delete wouldn't be a good option. You need an option that guarantees you that, even with file recovery, all your deleted files are safe.

How to securely delete a file

Below is how you can securely delete a Mac or Windows operating system file depending on what you use.

How to securely delete files on Mac

To securely delete files from a Mac can be a little confusing. But you don't have to stress over it because we're here to simplify the process. A Mac operates on Solid State Drives (SSD) or Hard Disk Drive (HDD) storage, depending on the year of manufacture.

Newer models operate on SSD, while the older models operate on HDD. Unfortunately, it's a hassle to delete files on SSD compared to HDD devices securely. Therefore, if you have older Macs, you can securely delete files by moving them to trash, then using the secure Empty trash feature.

Other methods to securely delete files on older models include using:

  • The terminal tab folder
  • The Trim feature
  • An encrypted disk image
  • Third-party Software

On the flip side, to securely delete a file on later Mac models, it's recommended to use the File Vault feature. The File Vault works for all Mac devices—old and new. In addition, it can secure all files on your device and not only single files.

If you follow any of these methods, there's no way anybody can restore securely deleted files on your Mac device.

How to securely delete files in Windows 10

If you're a Windows 10 user, you can securely delete files using third-party apps like Eraser, file shredder, or Freeraser. Using either of these methods, you can securely delete individual files and folders depending on your preference.

However, you have to download and install this third-party software on your computer to access their secure delete features. Freeraser is more suitable for deleting individual files, while eraser and file shredder work for both individual and folder files.


If you're looking for a reliable system for managing work or personal files, a great idea would be trying out a files management software like WinZip. The software is the best of its kind on the market and comes with amazing features like complete files management.

This feature enables you to easily find, open, edit, move and share your files regardless of where they are—your computer, network, or cloud service. Other amazing features include: unzip all major formats, share anywhere, and protect your privacy.

Need to Download WinZip?

TRY NOW Learn More