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(ITS Staff only)
Spider is an open source network forensics tool developed at Cornell University to identify the presence of Personally-Identifiable Information (PII) on a computer. It scans for data such as Social Security, credit card, or bank account and routing numbers, and produces a list of files that may contain confidential data. Spider can then be used to:
|Empty the Trash or Recycle Bin||Removes files you may have forgotten. Also, trash folders and the recycle bin aren’t always scanned by data discovery tools.|
|In your email program, empty the Trash folder. (In Eudora, compact mailboxes.)||Removes old mail that may have been deleted and forgotten.|
|Clear the cache and history from the web browser you use most.||Quite a lot of old personally identifiable information is found in browser caches, so this cleanup step should become part of a routine. (In Firefox, you can automate this process when you exit the application.)|
|Back up your system.||If you accidentally shred a document you later realize you need, you can retrieve it from the backup copy.|
You may need to have administrative rights and the ability to launch Spider with administrative rights before you can run the scan.
You can use Spider to scan the following:
Note: You can run Spider while other applications are open. Spider does not scan open files, so be sure to close any files that should be included in the scan.
You may need to have administrative rights and the ability to launch Spider with administrative rights before you can run the scan.If you are scanning a folder on a server, you should map the server to a drive letter on your machine.
Spider for the Mac creates a file called Spider.log. The default application used to view the file is Console, but it's usually easiest to rename the file with a .csv extension and then open it in Excel.
The log file is likely to contain a number of false positive results, so pare down the list before you start checking individual files.
After you remove some of the obvious false positive files, check the list of files that were flagged as potentially containing confidential data:
Thanks to Cornell University for providing this tool. The most recent information concerning Cornell Spider for Macintosh may be found at http://www.cit.cornell.edu/services/spider/howto/mac/index.cfm