Choose An Electronics Recycling Program That Guarantees Your Confidential Data Will Never Be Compromised
If you’re looking to recycle laptops, desktop computers, printers, servers, or any outdated electronic equipment that contains confidential information, then there is really only one recycling option that is guaranteed to be 100% safe and effective; shred hard-drives on-site.
The Problem With Some Computer Recycling Programs
You may have heard that it’s safe to sell your old computer to a recycling firm, because they assure you that your hard drive will be wiped clean. But the truth is you can never be sure that all traces of confidential information will be cleaned from your hard drive.
You also may not realize that most recycling companies (even the honest ones) will ship your equipment or “de-manufacture” your electronic equipment and ship the parts overseas to a third world country. There the computer pieces are minded for data such as social security numbers, contact information, business memos, and more. And if you think it can’t happen to your organization, think again! According to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse (a non-profit organization that tracks security breaches) over 100 million computer files have been compromised since they began tracking this information just two years ago.
A recent investigation from the Computer Forensics team at the University of Glamorgan in the United Kingdom demonstrates this fact. Only two of 100 hard drives purchased on eBay, at fairs, and from wholesalers had no recoverable data on them – and one of the two drives was brand new. Half of the remaining drives could have had their data easily restored. The other half showed no attempts to remove data at all. Readily obtainable information, including financial details, a template for university degree certificates, and school records, were recovered. This is not the first such report on data available on second-hand disk drives. Robert Francis Group (RFG) profiled another such experiment performed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2003. (See the RFG Research Note “PC Disposal Strategies.”)
Choose A Company That Protects Your Data And Recycles Your Computer
Choose a company that will remove your hard-drives and shred them at your site. Then recycle your electronics in a secure, environmentally sound method and conforms to all environmental standards.