Whether it’s your personal computer or a hard disk drive containing information about clients, it’s likely that at some point you’ll need to get rid of an old electronic device.
Technology needs to be disposed of in a safe and secure manner—you can’t just throw it away once you’re done using it, because all the information will still be on there.
First thing is to know what are the different methods to dispose of data and which one is totally secure.
There are four different methods which can be used to destroy data.
- a) Degaussing
- b) Data Wiping
- c) Shredding
- d) Incineration
Let’s start with the first method Degaussing. Degaussing is one of the most secure method of disposing your data. Here Degaussers utilize magnetic fields that effectively demagnetize the device, thus erasing the data. By leaving the electronic in a blank state, organizations are assured complete safety of their information.
A key advantage to degaussing is that it makes data completely unrecoverable, making this method of destruction particularly appealing for dealing with highly sensitive data.
On the negative side, strong degausser products can be expensive and heavy, and they can have especially strong electromagnetic fields that can produce collateral damage to vulnerable equipment nearby.
Second is Data wiping which includes software like Blancco to overwrites the data on the hard disk drive and serve as an elementary approach to denying access to important information. Sometimes if the hard drive is faulty then we cannot use this software and in such case mostly follow the degaussing method. The advantage of using this method is that after the data wiping the asset is usable for resale purposes.
Next comes shredding which is the physical destruction of data. In shredding the data is completely removed using a data shredder thus making it unrecoverable.
One of the biggest advantages of this method is that it provides the highest oath of absolute destruction of the data. There’s no likelihood that someone will be able to reconstruct or recover the data from a disk or drive that’s been physically destroyed.
On the down side, physical destruction can be a costly way to get rid of data, given the high capital expenses involved. Also it can affect the Companies green and sustainability programs.
Incineration is the last and less commonly used physical destruction method of disposing the data. As the name suggests Incineration means burning of data. The main advantage of this method is that it removes all the data thus providing the absolute security of data. As data cannot be retrieved this method is mostly securable to use. But the biggest disadvantage is that the asset becomes completely unrecoverable. Also it affects the environment in extensive way.
Thus, if your organization needs to dispose of old media containing vulnerable information, consider using the bilateral approach of degaussing and crushing. Not only is it fast and safe, but it will keep the business in the clear of any potential compliance breaches.
No matter what method you select the most important thing is to always make sure your data is securely wiped or destroyed because it means trouble if comes in the wrong hand.