The erasure standard of the US Air Force was first published under the Air Force System Security Instructions AFSSI-5020. It is very widespread and is part of the numerous programs that utilise software-based data destruction to overwrite existing information on a hard drive or other storage medium.
The so-called AFSSI-5020 data erasure process is usually portrayed as follows:
Pass 1: Overwriting the data with a zero;
Pass 2: Overwriting the data with a one;
Pass 3: Overwriting the data with a random character as well as verifying the writing of this character.
After a data storage medium has been erased with the AFSSI-5020 data erasure method, software-based file restoration is generally excluded. Furthermore, the use of this erasure standard prevents a hardware-based restoration or extracting of data.