APC Australia



Traces of your software usage

Browsers aren’t the only programs to keep track of your recent activities. Other software stores details of the documents, images, videos and other files that you’ve opened, edited, played and saved. This informatio­n can be easily viewed by anyone else who uses your computer. For this reason, it’s a good idea to regularly wipe personal data from the tools most likely to compromise your privacy.

Privacy Eraser provides plug-ins for more than 200 popular programs that remove all traces of your usage by performing clean-ups without changing other settings. Click the Applicatio­ns tab to view available plug-ins for programs and Microsoft Store apps installed on your PC. Our list included 7-Zip, Microsoft Office, Paint. NET, TeamViewer and Windows Defender, but yours will vary.

Select a plug-in, right-click it and choose Quick Clean, and Privacy Eraser will run a set of cleaning tasks for that program. These target files, folders and registry keys that reveal details of what you’ve been doing. You can also click the Custom tab to create your own plug-ins, though this requires you to know the exact items you want to clean. You should always close the relevant program before running its plug-in or the data may not be properly removed.

In PrivaZer, you can access the same software-cleaning feature by choosing ‘Scan specific traces’ then ‘Software use’. Programs are organised into categories such as Downloader­s, ‘Video, music software’ and ‘Other software’ ( 1 in our screenshot right) – PrivaZer will automatica­lly detect which tools you have installed.

On our PC, it recognised more software than Privacy Eraser managed, including IrfanView, Thunderbir­d and VLC. Click the Traces link 2 after running a scan to see details of the files, folders and registry keys that will be cleaned.

Unwanted software – in one click

One feature offered by Privacy Eraser but not by PrivaZer is an uninstalle­r, which lets you go further than just wiping details of your software activities by removing programs completely. Although you can do this using Windows’ uninstalle­r or a third-party tool such as BC Uninstalle­r (www.bcuninstal­ler.com), it’s a useful additional option for purging your PC of unwanted junk – and stops people knowing you’ve used a certain program.

To access the uninstalle­r, click the Tools tab ( 1 in our screenshot right) on Privacy Eraser’s home screen and select Uninstalle­r in the top-right corner 2. This will display an alphabetic­al list of all the programs you have installed – you can reorder these by install date or size by clicking the appropriat­e column heading, or search for a specific tool.

Select a program you want to remove from your computer and click the Uninstall button to open either the software’s own uninstalle­r or the Windows tool. Once you’ve got rid of the unwanted software, it’s worth scanning for and wiping leftover traces using the advice we provide on page 77.

 ?? ?? Privacy Eraser’s Uninstalle­r makes it easy to remove all unwanted software.
Privacy Eraser’s Uninstalle­r makes it easy to remove all unwanted software.
 ?? ?? PrivaZer tells you which traces it will clean to remove details of software usage.
PrivaZer tells you which traces it will clean to remove details of software usage.
 ?? ??

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia