Identity Finder

Identity Finder is a software tool you may use to search emails and files for data such as Social Security numbers, credit cards, and passwords.

Install Identity Finder

When you run the program the first time, it creates shortcut on your desktop for later use.

Click Here to Run Identity Finder (works only in Internet Explorer on computers in Law School)

When ITS installs Identity Finder on your system, it will be preconfigured with search locations and search options. Please do not change any of these options. If you have any concerns with where or how the program will search, please contact ITS for assistance.

Video Walkthrough

We have a video demo and help document to help you learn how to identify, locate, and analyze sensitive data stored in your email and on the server. The video shows you how to use the software from start to finish.


Please examine the results and take steps to protect the data: delete the email or files, archive them with ITS Offline, or list them in the SPIA survey if they need to stay on the server.

What to Search For

Identity Finder searches email and documents for text that matches certain patterns. By giving Identity Finder extra information you will increase the likelihood that Identity Finder finds all the matches on your PC. In the What to Search For tab, you can seed Identity Finder with bits of sensitive data, such as specific credit card numbers or passwords.

  1. Click on Add/Remove Information.
  2. Select an Identity Type from the drop-down menu.
  3. Fill in the relevant data and click Add.


To begin a search of your computer for sensitive data, click on the green Start button on the Main tab of the toolbar.

The search can take between five minutes and an hour, depending on the number of files and e-mails. Once the search is complete, click the Save button in the upper-left.

Post-Search Analysis & Processing

Once you have completed the search, you will be presented with a list of positive matches. For each match:


As a general rule shredding is the optimal action, unless the document must be retained. Shredding a file will permanently and securely delete it immediately with no option to undelete. Once deleted, there is no possibility of recovering the data.


If you need to keep a file, but can delete the sensitive information which Identity Finder found, use the Open action. This will directly open the file, allowing you to make any necessary edits to remove the sensitive data. We do not recommend editing emails, it is possible, if needed, you can open an email and select More Actions > Edit Message to remove sensitive data.


Use this option to remove false positives from the list - such as 9-digit numbers which are not Social Security Numbers. You can Ignore either an entire file or a particular pattern across all files.

Leave Alone

Data that needs to be retained as is - neither shredded nor altered - must be reported to ITS via the SPIA Survey Form.

Helpful Tips

Save and Open Results File

Depending on the number or results returned, you may want to process the results in a few sittings. You can save your results at any point and open it later. When you save the file, you will be prompted to password-protect the results file. When you open the file, you will need to enter this same password.

Internet Explorer Saved Passwords

Because Internet Explorer saves passwords in an insecure format, Identity Finder will locate and report these passwords. ITS suggests shredding these saved passwords. To turn off the Save Passwords feature in Internet Explorer:

  1. In Internet Explorer, click on Tools > Internet Options
  2. In the Content tab, click on the AutoComplete Settings button
  3. Uncheck Usernames and passwords on forms and click OK twice.

Preview and Masking

In the View group of the Main toolbar, click on the Mask Passwords button to display ’*****’ in the place of passwords in results window. This does NOT change the files, but only how the results are displayed.

Here you can also disable the Preview Pane on the right to increase your privacy while processing the results.


Systems Availability

  • Our online services may not be available during these maintenance periods.

    Fridays: 5pm-midnight
    2nd & 4th Tuesdays: 5pm-7pm

    Tuesdays: 5am-7am
    Thursdays: 5pm-7pm


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