Best Practices for Data Destruction
Updated: Apr 28, 2022
Protect your information, privacy, and reputation; make sure you’re familiar with the best practices for data destruction, so you hire the right specialists.
Information is currency, but more than money is at stake if you dispose of your data incorrectly. When your files fall into the wrong hands, the consequences are devastating. There are no shortcuts when it comes to protecting your business, clients, privacy, and reputation. But you can rely on these best practices for data destruction to keep your information confidential.
You can send your old equipment out for erasure and hope for the best, but the only way to really know if it’s been destroyed is by seeing it happen for yourself. You’ll have better peace of mind when you can see your hard drive or SSD physically shredded on-site. You can ask questions of data destruction specialists and watch their processes. Seeing is believing when absolute data protection is involved.
You can overwrite data with zeros, random characters, or your own pattern of ASCII characters. Even one pass of this process is effective, but you should request three, five, or even seven passes as per your judgment. It’s the most cost-effective and safest way to make your data disappear without destroying usable equipment. Experts have recommended as many as 35 passes over the years, but overwriting a few times with different characters is thorough enough.
Documenting the process is essential. Make sure your destruction specialist uses R2-level data wiping software and complies with NIST 800-88 guidelines for media sanitization, DoD 5220.22-M, and NSA standards. You should receive a complete inventory list with serial number recordings, as well as a Certificate of Erasure.
What happens to your equipment after it’s been erased? If you sell used IT hardwareto the company that destroyed the data, you can be confident that it will be refurbished responsibly. Working with one company streamlines the process for you, saving time and money.
At Evergreen IT Solutions, we offer certified hard drive destruction and buy back equipment in the Bay Area. We work with data centers, corporate offices, healthcare facilities, and more. To understand more about the best practices for data destruction, contact us to hear about our methods and standards.