Documentation Gathering, Sanitization, and Storage: an excerpt from A PUBLIC SERVICE

There will always be new ways that data forensics can identify you, or uncover information based on data that you inadvertently leave in your files, or data that is retained in logs noting who has accessed what files on what network. Recently it was discovered that noise from electrical grids can be used to quite accurately pinpoint when, and potentially where, an audio recording was made. The best way to win this war—or at least to avoid becoming collateral damage—is to work outside the standard methods and find partners who have experience.

Of course, the actual collection of documents has changed dramatically over the years. In 1969, Daniel Ellsberg systematically removed documents, including the Pentagon Papers, from the RAND Corporation in his briefcase, taking them to an advertising agency where he (sometimes with the help of his 13-year-old son) photocopied them, one page at a time. Though this took enormous courage and psychological stamina—and in 1969 all that copying was certainly time-consuming and undoubtedly tiresome—it was also technologically straightforward and relatively safe. As long as the guards didn’t stop and check his briefcase, and as long as no one saw him remove and return the reports, Ellsberg could duplicate the papers undetected.

Read the full excerpt here.

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