Extracting files from archives can overwrite files that already exist.
If you receive an archive from an untrusted source, you should make a
new directory and extract into that directory, so that you don't have
to worry about the extraction overwriting one of your existing files.
For example, if untrusted.tar came from somewhere else on the
Internet, and you don't necessarily trust its contents, you can
extract it as follows:
$ mkdir newdir
$ cd newdir
$ tar -xvf ../untrusted.tar
It is also a good practice to examine contents of the archive
before extracting it, using --list (-t) option, possibly combined
with --verbose (-v).
Published under the terms of the GNU General Public License