Stupid is a harsh word so I will use the word ‘uninformed’. Some very intelligent people hand over their private information to strangers. Why? Because they don’t know any better.
Recently, at a networking chamber luncheon, I was speaking to a very intelligent business owner about her products. She knew her business well and had some very good items that I was interested in. After she told me all about her business and what she could do for me, she wanted to know more about our business. After hearing what we do, she then told me she had some laptops in her garage forever but she recently had a man a come by and take the computers away with other junk she didn’t want.
“What did you do with the hard drives?” was my first question. She looked at me with a puzzled look and then her expression turned to fear.
“Uh…well, nothing. I guess. “ She paused, “What was I suppose to do with them?”
I explained that her hard drive was full of information that can be retrieved with ease. After I explained how hard drives hold data I saw her swallow hard. She honestly thought that when she deleted things and emptied the digital recycle bin she had safely cleared information off her computer.
I watched her get red in the face and blotches on her upper chest as she explained that when she gets nervous or upset, blotches appeared. I felt bad. She had no idea about hard drives and the confidential information they hold.
Hopefully the man that came by her house did the right thing and took the hard discs out and brought them to someone like us that destroyed the data. What are the chances of that? Probably very slim.
Don’t think that your hard drive is clean by deleting, trashing, or using erasing software. Take your equipment to a place that will assure you the data will be destroyed. There are special machines that destroy data and they are not cheap. Better yet, if you are in the Greater Tampa Bay Area, let us, Urban E Recycling, pick your e-waste up and destroy the data to DoD standards. We will send you a ‘Destruction of Data Certificate’ as soon as the information is destroyed from your disc. Actually, you have other choices with us; erasing, crushing, degaussing or we will even take your hard drive out and give it back to you. You choose. We take security seriously. Our reputation depends on it.