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If I ‘Wipe’ A Hard Drive, Can Anyone Get To Information Once On It?

Thursday, March 5th, 2020

hard drive shredding

Wiping a hard drive refers to the process of erasing data from a computer by overwriting it with binary code. There is a popular myth that you must write over data multiple times to make it unrecoverable. In reality, overwriting a drive once offers the same level of protection as overwriting a drive multiple times. Wiping the hard drive is done in instances like selling a computer or disposing of it. But simply wiping the hard drive isn’t enough protection. Someone who is computer savvy enough can retrieve enough data to access your personal information (or confidential client information).

Why Do You Need To Wipe A Hard Drive?

But what’s the point of wiping a hard drive? Once someone has deleted computer files, aren’t they gone forever? When you delete a file in Windows or another operating system, the system simply marks the sectors that contain data as unused so that they can be overwritten in the future. As long as the files haven’t been overwritten, you can run a file recovery program and get the data back. It takes considerably longer to write over data than to mark it as unused. Unless you want to make data unrecoverable, there’s no reason to waste resources overwriting data.

It is not uncommon for company computers to get passed from one employee to another. For example, an employee may receive an old computer when he steps into a new position. Wiping a hard drive is a viable solution for clearing a hard drive that will still be in use within the company. The new employee can start with a clean slate, minimizing the risk of a security breach for any information the last user had stored on the computer.

What Should You Do With A Hard Drive You No Longer Need?

When you’re ready to retire a computer from company use, it’s best practice to wipe the drive. Otherwise anyone skilled in information retrieval can still access the files. After you’ve wiped the drive, you must dispose of the hard drive in a proper fashion. Putting the hard drive into long-term storage or sending it to a standard electronics recycling center doesn’t guarantee full information safety. The best way to ensure that no one can access the information on a hard drive anymore is to destroy it completely.

What Is Hard Drive Shredding?

Hard drive shredding is the absolute solution to ensuring private data is not retrieved from computer. It is a mechanical device that can dispose of hard drives in such a manner that the equipment is obliterated. The platter in the drive where data is kept is severed and the drive is then completely shredded. You can get a hard drive shredded by looking for a place that offers secure document destruction, it is likely that they will also offer hard drive destruction services.

A reputable hard drive destruction company has the skill set to destroy computer hard drives physically as well as other means of storing electronic data, including copier hard drives, flash drives, CDs and DVDs. It can take years for a business to build a stellar reputation, but mere hours for a single security breach to send that reputation down the tubes. You can’t afford to take this risk.

Document destruction in Amarillo and the Texas Panhandle

If you would like to learn more about shredding, contact UCI Document Destruction in Amarillo and Lubbock, Texas. UCI has been a leading copier company in the greater Texas Panhandle region for more than 20 years. We take great care in making sure your personal and business documents are property destroyed so no one can access them. Our shredding team goes through background checks and drug screening before ever touching your documents and hard drives. You can reach us at (806) 372-7722 in Amarillo or (806) 722-0544 in Lubbock, or Send Us an Email to learn more about our Services.