Data Deletion And Data Erasure

Many consider data deletion and data erasure to mean the same thing. This blog talks about how they are different and why data erasure is a better option.

The words deletion and erasure give a similar mental picture; something that once was, and now is not. Data deletion and data erasure can also give us the same idea. However, can we use these two terms interchangeably? How can we differentiate between erasing vs deleting data?

In this 5-minute blog, we aim to discuss erasing vs deleting data. Here’s a list of the topics we will cover:

  • Data Deletion And Data Erasure – What Are They?
  • Data Deletion vs Data Erasure
  • Data Deletion – The Risks
  • Data Erasure To Help Complete Erase Your Data

Data Deletion And Data Erasure – What Are They?

To make things simple, you can assume data deletion to mean deleting data like you would when you delete a file from your PC. Data erasure is erasing a file out of storage like using an eraser on paper. 

The point we’re trying to make is that these two terms are very different; from how they work, their purpose, and why we use them. To understand erasing vs deleting data, let’s start by understanding how data deletion works.

Data Deletion

Operating systems use a table structure known as the file system to track storage units or clusters on a hard disk. The file system observes how the clusters retrieve and store data.

The New Technology File System (NTFS), File Allocation Table (FAT), and the Apple File System are all examples of file systems. These systems store addresses or pointers for Windows, and nodes for Mac.

When you delete a file, your OS deletes the nodes or pointers, but not necessarily the actual file. Since the address to the file no longer exists, the file is invisible and therefore inaccessible.

However, since the file is invisible, we can conclude that the file still exists, and so does the data. Deleting a file from the recycle bin does not permanently delete the file. Using Data Recovery software you can retrieve deleted data.

To understand the difference between erasing vs deleting data, let’s now consider data erasure.

Data Erasure

Data eraser is complex in comparison to deletion. Data erasure overwrites data with binary like 1s and 0s. It can also use pseudo-random patterns. The purpose of a data eraser is to completely destroy data. 

Data eraser is also known as data destruction since data becomes illegible once it is overwritten with binary. There are various methods to overwrite data and these differ in the number of times it is overwritten, the verification of the overwriting method, and the patterns.

With that, we understand on a basic level how we can differentiate between erasing vs deleting data. To make the difference between data erasure and deletion simpler, let’s look at a quick comparison.

Data Deletion vs Data Erasure

We can split the data erasure and deletion difference into four parts.  

Difference Between Data Erasure And Deletion’s Technical Mechanism

Data deletion deletes the master file table and marks the space created as available. Data erasure overwrites data with binary patterns which results in complete data deletion.

Method of Implementation

In erasing vs deleting data, data deletion is manual. Users need to either click Shift + Delete on their keyboard or empty recycle bin. Data erasure requires a software tool to carry out its functionality.

The Data Erasure And Deletion Difference In End Result

Once a user deletes data, it creates storage space that they can use again. However, they can use data recovery software to recover deleted data. If a user carries out data erasure, the data is completely erased.


When you delete data, you can recover it. However, if you erase data, you can no longer recover it.

This basic overview can help you differentiate between erasing vs deleting data. However, our discussion does not end here. Deleting data is a regular process for almost all of us. Yet, many do not know the risks involved with data deletion.

Data Deletion – The Risks

As mentioned earlier in our discussion differentiating erasing vs deleting data, when users delete data, they are not completely removing it. This data is accessible through software recovery solutions. Due to this fact, if you delete sensitive information, it is still at risk of sabotage.

Moreover, personal photos, licenses, nationality ID cards, passports, and visa details are all at risk of exposure. If this personal information gets out, it can lead to identity theft, damage to your personal brand, litigation, security threat, financial fraud, and more.

Organizations will need to deal with breaches to their data and that of their customers. Hence, instead of data deletion, adopting data erasure software is the best way forward.

Data Erasure To Help Complete Erase Your Data

One of the most secure and effective methods of getting rid of unnecessary data is through data erasure software. Data is destroyed by repeatedly writing random binary patterns and overall addressable memory locations, as was explained before; this makes the data unrecoverable by any data recovery method.

Data erasure gives you complete control of your data. Today, that is a massive benefit to have. BitRaser is a state-of-the-art erasure technology that guarantees permanent data erasure. The software works perfectly on desktops, SSDs, HDDs, and PC servers. Through BitRaser you can prevent data leaks and ensure complete security. Reach out! 

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By Michael Caine

Meet Michael Caine, a versatile author hailing from the tech-savvy landscapes of the USA. With a passion for innovation, he navigates the digital realm with his insightful perspectives on technology, gaming, and niche topics. Michael's writing transcends boundaries, seamlessly blending in-depth tech analysis with a keen understanding of the gaming world. His engaging content resonates with readers seeking a blend of cutting-edge insights and a touch of Americana. Explore the digital frontier through Michael Caine's lens as he unveils the latest trends and thought-provoking narratives in the ever-evolving world of technology and beyond.