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When you dispose your old computer or replace your hard disk with a new one, the old hard disk containing all your data has to be cleaned and destroyed properly. This old hard disk, with all confidential and private information, can fall into the wrong hands and cause a lot of problems.

To protect your data’s security, it is always better to destroy your old hard drive perfectly in order to avoid any problems later. However, there are multiple ways to do it and not all the ways ensure proper destruction.

Google will give you a number of search results on how to destroy your hard drive and though, all of them are not wrong, they are not perfect either. Some of the common ways found on the Internet are listed below.

1. Dropping it in water

We know that water destroys all electronic equipments. In the same way, water may damage the electronic components in the hard disk. However, this does not make the data unreadable. The data is still in the platter and can be recovered if the platter is not allowed to dry out. There have been cases where forensic experts have recovered useful data from hard disks that were found drowned in lakes.

2. Burning it in fire

This seems reasonable because burning the hard disk destroys the very existence of the physical device. The risk of anyone recovering data from a burnt hard disk is non-existent. But burning can release a lot of toxic chemicals and harmful gases into the environment and are you really sure you want to do something which is extremely non environment-friendly?

3. Using magnets

The Internet and some IT people will tell you that bringing magnets in close proximity to your hard drive will erase all your data or make them unreadable. This, however, does not guarantee complete destruction. Sometimes, using magnets may not very effective. The data is not entirely corrupted and can still be recovered.

4. Using tools like hammers and screwdrivers

Opening the hard disk using screwdrivers and breaking it using hammers is one way to go. The hard disk can be broken down to pieces and the platters can be shattered. However, this is a very tiring and exhausting thing to do.

5. Using Acids

Some people suggest using acids to destroy hard drives. Acids like Hydrochloric acid and Muriatic acid can peel away all the information on the platters of the hard drive. The risk here is that you are more likely to burn your hand during the process. Not all of us are experts with chemicals and using strong acids is generally not within our day-to-day tasks.

6. Scratching the disk or drilling holes

The platter is removed and holes are drilled into it. This makes the platter unreadable and effectively secures your data. But, in some cases, forensic experts may be able to read between the cracks and gather potentially useful information.

All these methods are effective in destroying the data in your hard drive, but there’s always a best way to do everything and the best way here is to use an efficient hard drive destruction service like Shred-it. Shredding the platter can ensure that your data is completely gone and when you have a large number of hard disks that you want to destroy or if your hard disk contains information of utmost confidential nature, then using a hard drive destruction service can help you ensure that your data never falls into the wrong hands.


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