Australian Digital Forensics Conference

Document Type

Conference Proceeding


The prevalence of remnant data in second hand storage media is well documented. Since 2004 there have been ten separate papers released through Edith Cowan University alone. Despite numerous government agencies providing advice on securing personal and corporate information, and news articles highlighting the need for data security, the availability of personal and confidential data on second hand storage devices is continuing, indicating a systemic laissez faire attitude to data security, even in our supposedly cyber security conscious world. The research continues, but there seems to be a lack of correlation of these studies to identify trends or common themes amongst the results. The fact that this type of research continues to be conducted highlights the deficiencies in the methods used to advertise warnings publicised by Government departments and industry experts. Major media organisations seem reluctant to broadcast these warnings, unless there is a bigger story behind the issue. This paper highlights the ongoing issues and provides insight to the factors contributing to this growing trend.


Originally published as: James, M. & Szewczyk, P. (2016). Survey on remnant data research: the artefacts recovered and the implications in a cyber security conscious world. In Valli, C. (Ed.). (2016). The Proceedings of 14th Australian Digital Forensics Conference, 5-6 December 2016, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia (pp.57-65).