Best Practices for Disposing of Old Computers

Best Practices for Disposing of Old Computers Newer and faster laptops, phones and tablets are being released every day it seems, but what are we supposed to do with the outdated devices we no longer want to use? The security of proprietary and personal information and environmental issues are the primary concerns when disposing of unwanted computers. Here are some guidelines we recommend when phasing out computers from your business or home. Deleting a File Does Not Actually Erase Information When you delete a file from the hard drive, the operating system only deletes the information that describes where the file is located. Simply deleting files, emptying the recycle bin or reformatting the hard drive is not enough to cover your digital tracks. In addition to documents, photos, videos, and private information that is accessible on your computer; there is also your Internet browser’s cache, cookies and history; email contacts and messages; and the recycle or trash folder. Don’t take a chance with the security of your business and personal information. A Computer Troubleshooters technician can complete any of the following strategies when trying to secure your personal information on an old device. The most cost-effective and commonly used strategy is the use of a software utility that overwrites the hard drive with random characters and binary data anywhere from three to more than 30 times. These utilities are typically referred to as data destruction software, hard drive eraser software or disk wipe software. Another effective but more costly solution is degaussing. This is the erasure of information through the use of a powerful magnet. Degaussing disrupts the magnetic...