The 2012 Investigation into Remnant Data on Second Hand Memory Cards Sold in Australia

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


SRI - Security Research Institute (ECU)


Faculty of Computing, Health and Science


ECU Security Research Institute




This article was originally published as: Szewczyk, P. S., & Sansurooah, K. (2012). The 2012 Investigation into Remnant Data on Second Hand Memory Cards Sold in Australia. Proceedings of 10th Australian Digital Forensics Conference. (pp. 41-46). Western Australia. Perth, Western Australia. SRI Security Research Institute.


This study investigates the remnant data on memory cards that were purchased through Australian second hand auctions sites in 2012. Memory cards are increasing in capacity and are commonly used amongst many consumer orientated electronic devices including mobile phones, tablet computers, cameras and multimedia devices. This study examined 78 second hand memory cards. The investigation shows that confidential data is present on many of the memory cards and that in many instances there is no evidence to suggest that the seller attempted to erase data. In many instances the sellers are asking the buyer to erase the data on the memory card. It is evident through this research that consumers are not appropriately informed of the dangers of disposing of personal media through second hand auction sites. Subsequently consumers do not take the appropriate actions to remove data.

Access Rights

Article freely accessible. ECU Security conference