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Identity Finder: Information for Users

Table of Contents

Download and Install Identity Finder


Download the Identity Finder installer software: login with NetBadge, select Identity Finder, and follow the prompts. Save the executable file to your Desktop, and double-click on it to install. Once Identity Finder is installed, a shortcut icon will appear on your Desktop, which looks like this:

Identity Finder Start Button

Configure and Run an Identity Finder Search

Before you begin, disconnect the VPN if it is active. Double-click on the Identity Finder shortcut icon, and the main Identity Finder window will open. Click on Start in the upper left-hand corner of the window, and the scan will commence.

You can do other work on your computer while Identity Finder is scanning, but you may find that your computer is slow, or that Identity Finder takes a long time to scan—possibly more than an hour. The scan time is a function of how many files and folders Identity Finder must scan, and the number of matches it finds.

The owner of the files should review the Identity Finder Report to assess and remediate personal and University-owned sensitive data, in accordance with the University SSN Policy, the Records Retention Policy, and all other applicable policies.

Identity Finder can shred data or quarantine it to either a local drive or a server. “Shred” is a secure delete that overwrites data being deleted. “Quarantine” means the data is moved to a new location, and shredded in the old. Identified documents may also be “redacted”, which means the document itself is retained, but the sensitive data is removed.

Identity Theft and Personally Identifiable Information (PII)


Identity Finder helps prevent identity theft by locating personally identifiable information (PII) stored on your computer, file shares, or external media, and allowing you to protect or dispose of such information securely and easily.

PII is any piece of information that could be used to identify, contact, or locate a specific person. Sensitive PII is PII that generally must be kept private and is used for financial or research identification. Examples of sensitive PII include Social Security Numbers, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, drivers license numbers, passport information and numbers, and account passwords.

Page Updated: 2014-01-29