If you have a Windows touchscreen device, there may be a secret file that contains years’ worth of data from your emails and other important documents. This is only found on touchscreen devices. I talked about handwriting input in a previous article. You can click here to learn how it works.

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Windows has a pretty good handwriting recognition feature for tablets and other touchscreen devices that turns your writing into readable text.  To improve its ability to recognize your handwriting, Windows scans commonly used words in your other documents and stores them locally on your PC. That shouldn’t be too much of a problem. The issue is that it stores that information for a long darn time. Again, not a problem unless a hacker, or someone else who wants to get into your business, finds that file. Now you may have never written anything of a sensitive nature using a stylus or your finger. But if you have, a hacker might be able to get his hands on it.

Here’s how to clear that file. This only effects touchscreen devices. So, if you’re not using one, you’re in the clear.

Here’s the path to find the folder:

 C:\Users\%User%\AppData\Local\Microsoft\InputPersonalization\TextHarvester\WaitList.dat

Let me show you how to get there step-by-step:

Start by opening This PC and clicking on your C drive.

this-pc-c-drive.jpg

Scroll down to Users and click to open.

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Find your username and click.

explorer-windows-username

Then choose AppData.

appdata-in-explorer

Click Local.

this-pc-local.jpg

Then Input personalization.

this-pc-input.jpg

You’ll see a file called WaitList.dat.  Delete it to clear the stored information.

waitlistdat.jpg

I want to point out that this data is harmless and a necessary feature of teaching your device to read your handwriting. But on the off chance that you might have scribbled down some sensitive information and want to be extra careful with, it’s not a bad idea to clear this out.  Of course, your best protection is to keep your security up-to-date and always lock your computer when you’re not using it.