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I need to securely wipe a Samsung 840 solid-state drive (SSD) of a co-worker that's leaving the company. My colleague ran into a problem he can't find the answer to.

The drive is encrypted with Samsung Magician software. We can't read the SSD in Linux, and Windows is unable to initialize it. The Magician software can erase the drive, but only if the password is present, which we don't have.

Is there another way to erase or reformat the drive?

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migrated from May 5 '14 at 19:56

This question came from our site for information security professionals.

This seems more of a product-specific issue. Try contacting the vendor's customer support? – schroeder May 5 '14 at 14:11
What exactly is the primary goal here? Re-purposing the SSD or disposing of its contents? – Daniel B May 5 '14 at 20:01
Disposing its contents, so that it can be re-purposed. – user857990 May 7 '14 at 7:49

Consider destroying the drive and buying the co-worker a replacement if necessary.

It's getting increasingly difficult to wipe drives. It's getting even more increasingly difficult to verify that a drive was wiped properly. Destruction is better (and if you pay someone like Iron Mountain to do it you get an audit trail) and drives are cheap to replace. Your colleague that's trying to figure this out, what's his hourly pay work out to? How much time does he need to spend on this before it was cheaper to buy a new drive?

Shred, baby, shred.

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+1 Wiping is hard, verifying is harder, hardware is cheap. – schroeder May 5 '14 at 14:12

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