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7 Best Ways to Safely Dispose of Sensitive Data on Hard Drives

As you get ready to shut down your company for the night, you are reminded of a task that needs to be completed before tomorrow morning: securely disposing of old hard drives. Where to dispose of hard drives? How can they be disposed of safely? This blog explores how you can dispose of sensitive data on your company’s hard drive with minimal risk and maximum benefits!

First, it is important to understand the scope of sensitive data. While hard drives are often associated with financial information and company files, there are also a number of other sources that may have confidential information that needs to be disposed of securely. This includes printed documents (such as e-mails and contracts), paper documents stored on-premises (these could be old corporate records) or in the cloud (for example, sensitive customer communications). It’s not just about destroying these items one by one; when large volumes of data need to be destroyed simultaneously, appropriate disposal methods need to be considered for each type before you can dispose of them safely!

Wipe It and Recycle

Recycling isn’t only for plastic water bottles and paper. If you don’t want to physically destroy your company’s hard drives, recycling is an alternative method of disposal. In order to recycle your old hard drives, first, wipe them of data by using a program like DBAN. You can also wipe data from hard drives with PGP whole disk encryption. After the data is wiped, recycle old hard drives by taking them to a recycling station.

Sell Your Hard Drives

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to get rid of old hard drives, sell them! You can do this by posting an ad on your company’s website or listing the used hard drive online in order to find a new home. If you plan on selling off your old hard drives, make sure they are wiped clean before putting them up for sale. This will ensure that any information stored within is safe from potential buyers who might want access to sensitive data (including).

Shredding

If you’re looking for a safe and secure way to dispose of old hard drives, consider shredding them. Hard drive shredders are designed specifically to destroy data on disks by cutting it into tiny pieces with rotary blades. Shredded hard drives can be recycled or disposed of in the trash without any worries about identity theft or other personal information that might have been stored on the drive.

Degaussing

One of the more complex techniques is known as degaussing. This process involves an electric current flowing through the hard drive in order to produce a magnetic field. The device is then rotated at high speeds for 30 seconds and that erases every single bit of data on it.

This is not only more expensive but also very time-consuming compared to other methods because you need special training and equipment in order to get this done properly.

The degausser will need some time (usually up to three hours) before they are ready again after each use, which means you can’t do multiple jobs back-to-back with these machines. It’s worth noting, though, that they might be right for your company if there’s no possibility of any future reuse or recycling of the drives involved.

Disintegration

Disintegration is a preferred method of disposing of hard drives, another option. It involves putting the hard drive in a machine, a disintegrator, that slices it into small pieces.

This is the most expensive option of all three, but it’s also often the best. Disintegration eliminates any possibility that someone in your company could lose their job due to lost or stolen data. However, you’ll need to use a professional disposal service to use a disintegrator.

Physical Destruction

The other option is to physically destroy the hard drive. There are a number of ways that this can be done, such as crushing or drilling holes in it and putting it through an industrial shredder. If you’re considering physical destruction, remember that these methods will create small metal pieces which could pose a danger if they find their way into water sources like rivers or streams.

Professional Data Destruction Services

The best option for destroying sensitive data from your company’s hard drives is professional data destruction services that offer specialized equipment such as hydraulic presses, magnets, and high-powered deionizers. These types of devices will completely obliterate all traces of your important documents, so they won’t end up falling into the wrong hands. This is by far the most effective way to ensure all the data is destroyed along with the hard drive. It is much more thorough than home remedies or software.

They also offer the best security for your sensitive information by being able to destroy every last trace of it, making sure that nobody else will ever have access to your personal and professional data again. IntelliShred’s professional data shredding services specifically help companies dispose of hard drives, reducing the risk of data security breaches. This can be especially helpful if you work in an industry with strict regulations on how long certain types of information should remain private before disposal.

How Safe Are Hard Drive Disposal Methods?

There’s no perfect answer here: every method has its pros and cons, from environmental impact to cost-effectiveness. However, degaussing might come out on top for some companies because it doesn’t require any expensive equipment or training – all you need is time (which most businesses have).

Where to dispose of hard drives?

If your company is looking for a professional hard drive disposal service to help them safely dispose of their old or outdated hard drives, IntelliShred’s data shredding service can help! We offer affordable rates and fast turnaround time, so you don’t have to worry about how long it’ll take us to get rid of all those pesky old hard drives taking up space on company shelves. Contact IntelliShred today for 

Are you wondering how to dispose of confidential documents the right way? The more data your business creates, the more you need to know how to manage and destroy it properly.  It’s your responsibility to protect the privacy of your employees and customers! In 2015, a study found that 48% of hard drives and smartphones and sensitive personal information on them.

Make sure you are disposing of confidential documents the right way. Businesses frequently need to destroy documentation and often according to the law. Otherwise, there are penalties and fines they have to face. Keep reading to learn about how to dispose of confidential documents and why it’s so important!

Disposing of Confidential Documents

When it comes to disposing of sensitive documents, sometimes it’s tricky to know what to do. Many people get sensitive documents in the mail every day. These documents can be a bank statement, credit card statement, or something similar. If you work for a business, especially a government agency or a law firm, you’re likely to come across sensitive information a lot more often. Even more, at least 35 states have laws requiring public and private government entities and businesses to destroy consumer data. So knowing how to dispose of data correctly is a legal requirement!

The first thing you need is to understand what documents have to be disposed of, such as:

  • Financial records with account numbers
  • Any legal or medical reports
  • Anything with a signature
  • Bank statements, deposit slips, and investment reports
  • Expired credit cards, ID cards, and pass
  • Income records
  • Tax records
  • Training information

You also have to dispose of any old contracts or telephone numbers. Pre-addressed envelopes, invitations, credit card preapprovals, and thank you notes can be common targets for data thieves.

Data Disposal Techniques

There are many ways to dispose of sensitive information. Let’s take a look at some methods you can use, depending on how much data you have to destroy.

Cutting

Cutting is an excellent method to use if you don’t have that much data to destroy. You can use a home punch to remove sensitive parts of the document. Then you can cut the rest of the papers into tiny pieces using scissors. The cutting method is pretty tedious though, and you likely won’t use this if you have any significant amount of data to destroy.

Burning

If you have a lot of data to destroy and want to get it done quickly, then burning it is an option for you. Burning is a very effective method of eliminating all sensitive data if you do it correctly. Make sure you choose a well-ventilated area that you have access to regularly. There are also local services that will incinerate your confidential documents for a fee.

Water

Water can also be an effective way to destroy your data. If you soak documents in water for long enough, they will eventually become unreadable. If you don’t have large volumes of data, you can place documents in a large bin of water. Leave them in the bin for up to a day. Then you can mix it all around until your documents are nothing but unrecognizable wet paper pulp. 

Although this method is very effective and inexpensive, it is also time-consuming and messy.

Shredding Business Documents

If you have a small business, you can choose to do your own business shredding. You can purchase your own paper shredder to use for your business needs. 

When you choose this option, you will have to make sure this is done on a regular basis and you stay compliant with the laws in your state. First, you will need to designate staff to handle this responsibility.  

You will also need to set policies and procedures in place to ensure this is done correctly. You will need to come up with your own method and stick to it. Otherwise deciding to shred or not to shred will take away the focus from your business.

A big downside of office shredders is that they are very messy and require you to take the extra steps of placing them in the trash or recycle bin once you’re done shredding. Office shredders also have limited capacity and require frequent maintenance to keep them working right.

Professional Shredding Services

Using a professional shredding service is your best bet for keeping your information secure. A professional company will only allow certified technicians to work with confidential information. A mobile shredding service is a great option for businesses to use. Using a mobile shredding service reduces your security risks greatly.

With a mobile shredding service, you are ensured that all confidential materials are destroyed on your own premises. Mobile shredding services are bonded and use mobile shredding trucks that use state-of-the-art technology. The best part is you will be provided with a certificate of destruction that you will be able to keep on file.

Nowadays, the destruction of documents can even be recorded on video, so you have added security to all the necessary steps required by law.

How to Dispose of Confidential Documents

If you’re wondering how to dispose of confidential documents, then the professionals at IntelliShred can help you! IntelliShred provides shredding, destruction, and recycling services to people in the New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania areas.

Stay compliant with the law and keep yourself protected. You want your business to stay in business. Make sure to contact us today. We will help you get started!

In this blog post, we are going to talk about how to prevent corporate espionage so that when it does happen – as it inevitably will – you’ll have a plan in place and won’t panic!

What would you do if your company was hit by a data breach? Or, worse yet, what if an employee had leaked all of your company’s secrets to the competition? If this has happened before, you know how devastating it can be. Corporate espionage is an extreme form of competitive intelligence that steals intellectual property and trade secrets to gain a competitive advantage. In fact, under the Economic Espionage Act (EEA) of 1996, corporate espionage is a federal criminal offense.

Conduct a Risk Analysis

The first thing to consider when looking at your company’s espionage prevention is where the threat is coming from. Every company has different obstacles preventing such actions, and it’s important that you know what yours are, so you can protect against them. Some common ones might be technology leaks, employee theft, or competitors hacking your systems – but if this doesn’t apply

Once you figure out which avenue they’re using, start thinking about how these employees would normally go about their job day:

  • What do they wear?
  • Do they have badges on them with barcodes that reveal information when scanned?
  • Where could one find sensitive documents (on napkins at lunch?)

It can also help to leave the company with a group of people, as well as prevent an individual from coming and going without being seen.

Establish Effective Security Policies

Following proper security protocols can prevent a lot of unnecessary security flaws. Your security policies outline how employees can select secure passwords, keep passwords and security cards safe, and other best practices for handling access to company information. To prevent unauthorized access to your computer and data system – you need to make sure that any terminated employees can’t get in, sensitive material is destroyed before being thrown away, and employee activity is monitored.

The policies should also prevent any sensitive information from being stored on personal devices or in the cloud. Discourage employees from sending attachments through email without encryption and encourage them to set up firewalls for all networks that are connected to your office network, so they can’t be accessed by outsiders.

For data storage, use encrypted repositories such as virtual private servers and don’t store anything more than is required for business purposes on them. For example, if customer records need to be kept secure, then keep them off of phones which could become lost or stolen. Make it mandatory that employees have their own unique login IDs rather than sharing one with other departments, so there’s no way unauthorized individuals gain access to confidential files.

Use a Professional Shredding Service

Did you know that if you have sensitive data stored at your home, office or warehouse it can be a liability? You’re exposed to risks such as theft, blackmail, and a potential intelligence breach. Moreover, how you dispose of classified information and devices, like company phones and hard drives, can create unnecessary risks too.

Using a professional shredding service can give you peace of mind that your confidential data and devices are destroyed once for all. Shredding is one of the most recommended techniques for destroying documents and devices that may put you at risk. Hard drive and paper shredders are designed to cut data on disks into tiny pieces with rotary blades. A shredding company like IntelliShred in New Jersey can shred, recycle or dispose of your private information to ensure it’s kept safe from potential spies. A shredding company will come in and render the documents and devices useless by cutting them into tiny pieces, so they are no longer readable. This is ideal for businesses who want to protect their assets.

 

Follow Principles of Least Privilege

Every employee should be granted the least amount of access to privileged information possible to do their job. The Principle of Least Privilege is based on a security concept that states once an employee has access, they can do anything within the scope of what’s allowed by their level or rights.

For example, if your company only needs employees with W-level privileges for accessing customer data records and John Smith just got hired as an administrative assistant last week without any experience in this area, he doesn’t need all W-rights at first; it could take time before he does enough work to warrant these additional permissions.

Principle of Least Privilege is a strategy that uses boundaries to encapsulate your information and power. By limiting the amount of information, power, and spaces employees have access to, you reduce the risk of data breaches.

Setup Secure Infrastructure

Secure your infrastructure to prevent and detect any unauthorized network traffic. Install antivirus software, data encryption tools, firewalls, virus scanners, or anti-malware in order to prevent hackers from gaining access to your company’s resources.

Determine what type of information is sensitive enough for you that it should be protected by the security measures mentioned above. Once this has been decided, take steps such as installing a firewall between these two networks, so they have their own levels of confidentiality and don’t affect each other if one becomes compromised.

Create Propers Employee Termination Procedures

When employees retire, get fired, or quit, it’s crucial that their access codes are revoked and that you ensure they return any sensitive company information and devices. This will help prevent the information from falling into unauthorized hands and prevent former employees from using company resources to take their competitors’ data.

Have a Contingency and Crisis Management Plan

Create a clear plan in place that outlines what should happen in the event of a data breach or suspected espionage. The plan should outline steps for reporting espionage and what the company should do if it is under attack. It should also include a system for notifying all of your employees about the data breach.

In order to prevent espionage, there are many ways you can take protect your company. Different companies need different measures. However, if every measure is tailored for a specific company’s goals and security risks then all the measures work together when one of them becomes compromised.

Conclusion

The key to preventing espionage is to be aware that any employee – or even someone outside your company – could potentially have access to sensitive information if they put in enough time investigating how your workflows. Once you know what their objective is, it’s easier to find ways around them – for example, by scanning badges at entrances/exits with bar codes, so there’s no way an outsider can get past security without anyone noticing. By thinking before acting when faced with these schemes, it will let you make more informed decisions about where the risk lies and how best to prevent corporate and industrial espionage. A shredding company, like IntelliShred can give you the added peace of mind that your confidential data is destroyed indefinitely. Contact us for more information.