Computers usage in the 21st century has increased in both homes and offices. This means, there are vast amounts of data held in the hard drives and failing to protect this data may lead to leakages of information to the outside world resulting in a series of lawsuits from clients. Therefore, companies and service delivery businesses should consider taking extra caution during hard drive destruction to ensure complete erasure of information.
1. Why Hire a Professional
Formatting a hard drive is just a beginning of the data destruction since it does not erase all the information contained on a hard disk. A formatted hard drive may still hold sensitive information, which may be easy to restore using readily available software. This leaves your sensitive data vulnerable to identity theft, violations of privacy, and intellectual property theft. Therefore, hiring a professional to complete the document destruction process should be one of your best alternatives.
2. Safety Precaution to Take
You should check the credibility of you service provider before releasing your hard drives to them for destruction. This includes an assessment of their security personnel and a proper inspection of their transport vehicles. You should also be sure that your paper shredding services and data destruction provider can give a proof of complete destruction of data. You may consider keeping away from a service provider who does not provide a certificate of destruction as a proof showing a successful erasure of data.
3. Hard Disk Destruction Methods
Formatting may leave some information intact that is easy to retrieve using software. Other reliable methods of hard drive destruction include:
• Degaussing- The process involves running magnetic charges on the hard drive which disrupts its magnetic domains leading to the erasure of data. It only applies to the magnetic devices and leaves the drive completely unusable.
• Use of data destruction software- the software overwrites the hard drive in different ways making any data extraction impossible. You can use this method if you intend to reuse the hard disk again.
• Physical methods- there are various ways of destroying a hard drive including shredding, grinding, disintegration, melting, or pulverization. A simple way includes drilling several holes on the hard drive platter ensuring penetration every time.
Companies should handle data destruction and paper shredding services with extra care since any release of information from the papers or the drives may lead to destruction of their reputation. Avoid burning, using acid, or putting a hard drive in a microwave for destruction since this would lead to a release of gasses that are harmful to your health. You may want to consult with the online resources from the Shred-it website.