Hard Drive Data Wiping
As a responsible citizen, it is understandable that you would want to recycle all your electronic devices or dispose of them by delivering the gadgets to e-waste management facilities. But, before you dispatch them, you must conduct proper hard drive data wiping to erase all the information on the storage platters of the devices. These disks can be a part of PCs, laptops, cell phones, or tablets. And, even gaming consoles.
Why is this essential? According to CNN Money, close to 50% of Americans have faced some kind of risk to their personal information. Also, know that various major organizations of the country including the Federal government have been the target of data breaches. To ensure that you don’t compromise the details of any entities connected to your business, use the optimum measures to make it impossible for hackers to decipher the data on your hard drives. Preferably, you must work with certified data destruction teams.
Deleting Data is Not the Same as Hard Drive Data Wiping
Have you been under the impression that deleting a file is similar to erasing it? You couldn’t be more wrong. When you delete a file, you simply delete its heading. That means the computer cannot find it again and will use the space to store a new file. Think of the hard drive as a chalkboard. Deleting the file means erasing the heading. But, hard drive wiping means erasing the writing under the heading. Or, writing on top of it so many times that the original writing cannot be seen. Without hard drive data wiping, cybercrime experts can easily find the deleted file in your hard drive.
Yes, You Can Use Software For Wiping a Hard Drive
Are you wondering if you can take care of the hard drive data wiping on your own? Yes, you can. You can download the right software from the internet and run the program to erase all the files on your hard drive. Further, most operating systems come with built-in data erasing programs. You only need to run the appropriate file and the system will take care of the hard drive wipe. Here are some of the tools you can use:
- Downloadable Hard Drive Eraser: Darik’s Boot and Nuke
- For Windows: Wipe File, DeleteOnClick, and Eraser
- For Mac OS X: Permanent Eraser
- Linux/Ubuntu: Wipe Package from Ubuntu Unleashed
So, Why Look for a Professional Hard Drive Data Wiping Team?
If you’re taking care of the information on a personal device, you could rely on software to take care of the hard drive data wiping on your own. But, when you’re dealing with confidential company records, you need the services of expert professionals using certified protocols. Here’s why:
- Using software for hard drive data wiping can be a time-consuming process. Further, these methods are not foolproof. Any determined hacker who has the expertise, time, and tools can get access to the saved information on your disks.
- Most hard disk wiping software are included in newer operating systems only. So, if your device is more than 5 years old, you’ll need more effective sanitization solutions.
- Your company hard drives may contain sensitive information such as price lists, intellectual property, engineering plans, and internal communication memos. They may also have passwords, and confidential facts and figures, among others. You’ll want this information protected from reaching your competitors.
- You might store confidential data such as Social Security numbers, bank account numbers, credit card details, and insurance provider details. This information helps you provide efficient services to your employees, clients, and partnering companies. You would not want to this information compromised.
- If any confidential data were to fall into the hands of hackers, you risk losing the trust the entities place in your business. And, you risk your company’s reputation.
- The law requires that you store all information for a fixed time. And then, remove all data according to the mandatory regulations to keep it protected. Professional hard drive data wiping agencies like Data Destruction take care of the disk wipe using the protocols outlined by the Department of Defense (DOD).
- Getting professionals to handle sensitive data helps indemnify your business. Such agencies issue a Certificate of Destruction.
What are the Department of Defense (DOD) Protocols for Erasing Hard Drives?
The Department of Defense has laid down rules and regulations for the permanent and secure erasing of the data on hard drives. Using the Three-Pass Overwrite or the Seven-Pass Overwrite, technicians can make all the data on hard drives impossible to recover. At the same time, these hard drives can be safely reused to store fresh data.
According to the standard process, the first pass is made with the “0” character after which a second pass overwrites the data with “1” characters. The third pass with random characters makes the data illegible. A final verification pass confirms that the data has been overwritten effectively.
When using the Seven-Pass Overwrite, here is the sequence used.
- “0” character pass
- “1” character pass
- Random character pass
- Second random character pass
- “0” character pass
- “1” character pass
- Random character pass
- Verification pass
Better Than Wiping – Mobile Hard Drive Destruction
Wiping is one of several destruction methods on offer, but the safest, most secure method is via mobile hard drive destruction. Secure transportation with tracking to an off-site facility ensures a full chain of custody and records are kept. Then opting for the hard drive shredding option, you can ensure your data is secured once and for all.
You Can Avail of Onsite and Offsite Hard Drive Data Wiping Solutions
Expert hard drive data wiping agencies like the Data Destruction Corporation offer you both onsite and offsite hard drive disposal options. Accordingly, you can choose to drop off the hard drives and other media at the facility so their certified personnel can wipe all data. Or, you can set up a schedule for them to collect the media from your premises. The crew arrives at your offices in secure trucks and collect the materials for transportation and sanitization in locked storage containers under strict supervision.
If you would prefer to supervise the hard drive data wiping, you can set up a schedule for the technicians to visit you at your office. They are trained in the techniques to securely erase a hard drive. Later, they will issue the mandatory certificate to protect your business. These processes ensure secure and terminal data destruction of the confidential data on your hard drives.