What is the Goal of Secure Data Destruction? 4 Reasons To Implement It
Imagine selling your old computers and getting blackmailed for a lot of money in a few years because of it. Everything from your old client information to private emails are in the hands of a stranger that could be anywhere in the world. This is exactly what happened to prominent Formula One drivers Adrian Sutil and Lewis Hamilton in 2008 — and it could definitely happen to you. That is why secure data destruction is so important! Keep reading to learn just how to protect yourself:
What Exactly is Data Destruction?
Data destruction is a process that renders data stored on electronic media, unreadable according to DoD hard drive destruction standards. This stops unauthorized parties from accessing the data .
Yet if you can just delete files, then what is the goal of secure data destruction anyway? It’s simple: when a user deletes files, they are simply wiped from the operating system of the device. The user only deletes a pointer to where that file is located on the hard drive.
As an analogy, grocery store owners can remove aisle signs so that you no longer know where anything is. However, doing this doesn’t remove the goods from the store and anyone can find them later. Deleted files never really go away and a stranger, all that data can be retrieved.
One common misconception is that destruction of hardware automatically destroys the data on that device. Apart from contributing to the global problem of e-waste, this is generally an inefficient way to secure data. As long as the hard drive of the device can be re-assembled, then data can be extracted from it. Instead of destroying hardware, you should send it to a certified electronics recycling outlet.
The Ultimate Goal of Secure Data Destruction and Why You Should Do It
It doesn’t matter what type of business you own– from banking to a private medical practice– As long as you store client information, a data breach can be catastrophic. While the mere thought of someone else getting their hands on your business accounts and emails is extremely alarming, it gets far worse. Strangers can also access intellectual property, previously deleted credit card information, addresses and sensitive data.
While taking time out to destroy your old data may seem like an inconvenience and added expense, it is worth doing. There are several major goals that data destruction seeks to help you achieve.
1. To Protect Yourself Against Identity Theft, Blackmail and Fraud
If you don’t destroy data properly, a stranger can easily get access to it and blackmail you. They can also use sensitive information. In fact, a study by the UK information commissioner’s office showed that some second-hand devices still have enough personal data to commit identity theft. Clearly, there’s a lot at risk! Protect yourself by destroying data securely.
2. To Reduce Your Data Storage Costs
There is so much data in the world currently. According to IBM, 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created by humans everyday. As data creation continues to increase, so does the price of storage. If your business stores bulk client and employee information then there’s a chance that you spend a huge amount on just storage every month. By getting rid of your old data, you have less to store this means that you can save a lot of money on cloud storage annually.
3. To Avoid Legal Fines
4. To Increase Brand Trust and Loyalty From Your Clients
Another goal of secure data destruction is to increase the amount of trust your clients have in your business. The aim of most businesses is to grow a loyal base of customers who trust their brand enough to patronize it frequently. If your company has a history of security breaches because of inefficient data disposal, it will ruin your reputation.
How to Securely Destroy Data
There are several ways to dispose of data according to DoD hard drive destruction standards including hard drive shredding and demagnetization. However, these must only be carried out by certified IT asset disposal experts.
All Green Recycling has been offering secure data destruction and electronic waste recycling services for a long time. We know through our years of experience, that any mistakes in the process could potentially lead to problems. You owe it to yourself and your clients to protect sensitive information that can be used against them.
While it is normal practice for enterprises to format old computers or throw them away, this is dangerous if data disposal is not done. How can data be secure if it still exists in the hands of a stranger who can use cheap software to access it? There is no shortcut to keeping data safe but the effort is worth it eventually when security disasters are avoided.
According to a study by IBM, the average cost of a data breach is about $3.62 million. No matter how you look at things, it costs less to appropriately dispose of data than it does to fight court battles and pay for damages. Contact us to avoid those lawsuits and client distrust as well as cut storage costs by destroying old data and recycling all your electronic media today. All Green has drop-off sites in every state in the U.S, ensuring that businesses can conveniently reach us.
Have you recently encountered problems with data disposal? Leave a comment below and we will respond. Don’t forget to share this with anyone who would like to learn about secure data destruction.