Xbox 360 Xbox 360 Stores Data Forever



Drexel University recently released a study that found that the Microsoft Xbox 360 stores credit card information on the system hard drive permanently. The researchers purchased a refurbished Xbox 360 from an authorized resellers, and with some basic modification software was able to access all the files and folders on the gaming system hard drive, including the credit card information of the previous owner.

The researchers, Cindy Casey, Ashley Podhradsky, Rob D’Ovidio, and Pat Engebretson from Dakota State University, conducted the research. "I think Microsoft has a long-standing pattern of this," Podhradsky told Kotaku. "When you go and reformat your computer, like a Windows system, it tells you that all of your data will be erased. In actuality, that's not accurate — the data is still available ... so when Microsoft tells you that you're resetting something, it's not accurate."

Microsoft general manager of security Jim Alkove said the company is “conducting a thorough investigation” into the credit card data storing issue, and said in an email to SecurityNewsDaily that “"Xbox is not designed to store credit-card data locally on the console, and as such [it] seems unlikely credit-card data was recovered by the method described…Additionally, when Microsoft refurbishes used consoles, we have processes in place to wipe the local hard drives of any other user data. We can assure Xbox owners we take the privacy and security of their personal data very seriously."

The researchers however suggest users hook their hard drives to a computer and utilize hard-drive ‘sanitation’ software to make sure it’s clean.
Wow, that is scary information you shared with us! I did not realize that kind of information was stored forever inside the Xbox. It sounds like Microsoft was just trying to cover their butt, so they do not get into trouble.
Wow, I had no idea that your credit card information is PERMANENTLY stored on the hard drive! That worries me, because I've had issues with Windows computers, just like the article was talking about, where even though everything was supposed to have been erased, it really wasn't. If we ever get rid of our Xbox 360 (which we would only do if it quit working and couldn't be fixed) I guess we'll have to destroy the hard drive so that no one can access that information.