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I have a new folder on desktop with images that I accessed via bridge and did minor edit in ACR.  Now, I wish to move these OFF my computers completely to dropbox for security.   I do not want 'any trace' of these images on this computer that could be accessed by another.  Apologies if this is a dim question.  The files were just jpeg but I want NO TRACE of them to be found on this computer should it be stolen or accessed.  Can you advise if moving them off the computer is all I have to do or, I have to delete any additional files or side car (only attached to raw files I think).  I thank you and I need to know at the earliest, pls.

iMac PRO 2017
Mac OS High Sierra

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I get what you mean. You will want to do a "Secure Erase" of the files on your computer. If you are wanting them to be gone from your computer, you will need to delete everything that is associated with those files. I would also upload them to Dropbox directly via their website, rather than putting them in the Local Dropbox Folder on your HD, which automatically syncs to Dropbox's Servers.

Now for the easy part, when it comes to Macs, it's really tough getting files back once you delete them. The macOS does have some built in features that allow you to do a secure erase and a program that I often recommend, CleanMyMac X, has a "File Shredder" option, which makes it easy to securely-erase files. The folks at MacPaw who create CleanMyMac also were nice enough to give you quick-and-dirty instructions on how to securely erase files manually.

Now, if you are super-paranoid, I wouldn't have imported them to a Main HD. I would have used a Thumbdrive or an external HD with nothing on it but those images and then did a secure format, 3 passes should be sufficient, but you could have gone as high as five. I would also purge any cache files that deal with Photoshop or Bridge and if you are using Lightroom, more than likely you will have to delete your catalog as well. Every little bit of those files / side-car stuff...everything needs to go. Unfortunately, I've never gone to this extent in trying to cover my tracks, so my knowledge is limited, but definitely start by doing a "Secure Erase" of those images/files on the local side of the computer.

Oh, make sure your Dropbox Password is very secure. Don't use simple passwords like your Kid's / Dog's names, make it at least 15 or so characters, with letters, numbers and multiple symbols. Also use a e-mail address that isn't a normal one. Since it seems to be only these images you are looking to secure, I would create a new e-mail account on another computer (Not G-Mail, they read your stuff) and setup a new Dropbox Basic account. You just need this e-mail in order to create a new Dropbox account. I think you get 2GB of free storage, which should be enough for your group of files. Then load those files directly via a web browser. Then run CleanMyMac and have it do a scan and delete stuff.

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Oh, give this article a read as well...


That article is a bit out-of-date. Click Privacy in CleanMyMac X and then hit the "Scan" button. Before you click "Remove" you will be given a choice of options. I'd start checking things, but be careful, if you aren't careful, you could nuke any saved logins.

Here is a screenshot from my computer. Safari and Firefox are the only two browsers installed on my computer, if you have more they will be listed on your computer. If you don't have CleanMyMac X, I'd buy it.


Screen Shot 2020-01-11 at 12.00.15 PM.png

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Very thorough and detailed information. Thank you for seeing my question as you did. I had my doubts on how I relayed it, so I thank you. 
The attention you gave this is admirable. I will follow all your instructions early tomorrow morning. I agree with you that the images should have been on an external like a USB in place of HD. Initially,  I wanted the raw files to convert to dng and edit but then progressed, as only docs, to require jpeg.   Have not touched LR so should not be catalogues. Only DL to d/top folder and edited jpegs in ACR.  I will attend to caches. Will read all your instructions through thoroughly and follow. 
I thank you again for your attention and the level of detail you provided me.  My reasons for this thoroughness are mine. They are honourable. They are necessary. 

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