Data destruction has become an essential part of planning for the future, in businesses of all sizes, scales and industries. Creating proper plans for the treatment of sensitive information at the end of its working life is integral to protecting its security, as well as the confidence of the customers and the legal position of the brand. Data stored physically on hard disks, memory sticks or on CDs can be both physically and electronically destroyed. Different methods are appropriate for people with differing levels of security risk: for instance, many businesses simply need their data to be overwritten sufficiently that it makes the original content illegible. More sensitive information kept on hard drives might need them to be physically shattered in order to prevent anyone else accessing the drive. Once data is deleted, it cannot be accessed easily by the computer software or application. Unless it is destroyed, though, it has not been totally removed and with effort could likely be retrieved. Unfortunately, the people most likely to be exerting themselves in recovering this information are those who would use it for criminal intent.
There are two areas where data destruction offers particular benefits to security. The most obvious of these is in its cover against fraud. When old electrical items are disposed of, many find their way to recycling plants or rubbish areas. There is a large business in shipping these older items out to less economically developed countries, where enterprising individuals found that they could make more money from breaking down a computer into its constituent parts for resale as metal and circuitry than as a working device. From here, others started to work at recovering information on these old devices to use fraudulently. A large proportion of electronic devices today have a memory which could contain vast quantities of personal data, from telephone numbers, address and birth dates through to banking details and company files or identification codes.
Secondly, companies have a legal responsibility to ensure that their customer’s data is protected and disposed of in the correct manner. For most businesses, this means that simple deletion would not be enough. For the most secure data destruction services, please contact West Coast Computer Recycler for your needs. Destruction thus also protects from any claims of malpractice in this way.