Remove or hide personal information

The “Remove Properties and Personal Information” feature (on the details tab of the file properties UI) does not always remove information when you tell it to.

Start off by creating a small jpg image in paint and add some properties:
Add comment

0000 ff d8 ff e0 00 10 4a 46 49 46 00 01 01 01 00 60 ......JFIF.....`
0010 00 60 00 00 ff e1 10 b8 45 78 69 66 00 00 4d 4d .`......Exif..MM
0020 00 2a 00 00 00 08 00 08 03 01 00 05 00 00 00 01 .*..............
0030 00 00 08 7a 03 03 00 01 00 00 00 01 00 00 00 00 ...z............
0040 51 10 00 01 00 00 00 01 01 00 00 00 51 11 00 04 Q...........Q...
0050 00 00 00 01 00 00 0e c4 51 12 00 04 00 00 00 01 ........Q.......
0060 00 00 0e c4 87 69 00 04 00 00 00 01 00 00 08 82 .....i..........
0070 9c 9c 00 01 00 00 00 0e 00 00 10 a2 ea 1c 00 07 ................
0080 00 00 08 0c 00 00 00 6e 00 00 00 00 1c ea 00 00 .......n........
0090 00 08 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 ................
                     8< 8< --- 8< 8<                                 
10b0 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 ................
10c0 53 00 65 00 43 00 72 00 45 00 74 00 00 00 ff e1 S.e.C.r.E.t.....
10d0 08 dd 68 74 74 70 3a 2f 2f 6e 73 2e 61 64 6f 62 ..http://ns.adob
                     8< 8< --- 8< 8<                                 
1c00 00 02 11 03 11 00 3f 00 fd fc a2 8a 28 03 ff d9 ......?.....(...

We can see the comment somewhere in the EXIF block. Now lets ask Windows to remove it:
Remove Properties UI
…and yes the comment is gone:
Comment removed
…or is it? The EXIF header changed but the comment content is still there!

0000 ff d8 ff e0 00 10 4a 46 49 46 00 01 01 01 00 60 ......JFIF.....`
0010 00 60 00 00 ff e1 10 b8 45 78 69 66 00 00 4d 4d .`......Exif..MM
0020 00 2a 00 00 00 08 00 07 03 01 00 05 00 00 00 01 .*..............
0030 00 00 08 7a 03 03 00 01 00 00 00 01 00 00 00 00 ...z............
0040 51 10 00 01 00 00 00 01 01 00 00 00 51 11 00 04 Q...........Q...
0050 00 00 00 01 00 00 0e c4 51 12 00 04 00 00 00 01 ........Q.......
0060 00 00 0e c4 87 69 00 04 00 00 00 01 00 00 08 82 .....i..........
0070 ea 1c 00 07 00 00 08 18 00 00 00 62 00 00 00 00 ...........b....
0080 1c ea 00 00 00 08 00 00 01 00 00 00 a2 10 00 00 ................
0090 0e 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 ................
                     8< 8< --- 8< 8<                                 
10b0 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 ................
10c0 53 00 65 00 43 00 72 00 45 00 74 00 00 00 ff e1 S.e.C.r.E.t.....
10d0 08 dd 68 74 74 70 3a 2f 2f 6e 73 2e 61 64 6f 62 ..http://ns.adob
                     8< 8< --- 8< 8<                                 
1c00 00 02 11 03 11 00 3f 00 fd fc a2 8a 28 03 ff d9 ......?.....(...

.DOC files seem to have the same issue, PNG/MP3/WMA seem to work correctly, did not bother testing other formats.

About these ads

Tags: , , ,

3 Responses to “Remove or hide personal information”

  1. xpclient Says:

    What free tool do you recommend to scrub metadata that has shell integration and supports various formats?

    • WindowsSucks Says:

      For JPEG you can use any command line tool (JHead etc) and create a new context menu command under HKCR\SystemFileAssociations\.jpg\RemoveEXIF\command. I don’t know (and have not looked for) a tool that removes info from “all” file types…

  2. xpclient Says:

    Hmm I found ImageMagick’s tools an excellent way to scrub all metadata – Mogrify to be specific.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.