Think before you recycle.

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Lardman

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Think before you recycle.
« on: April 03, 2021, 11:45 »
I've just finished some R&D stuff for work - After 500+ devices, 81% contained personal, confidential data  :ohmy: If you're recycling, upgrading, reselling or binning your old tech please make sure you've destroyed the data on it properly before hand. Identity cloning and fraud are big business and an increasing problem.

Felt I had to share as I was expecting 30-35% and was genuinely horrified at over 80%.

nosce te ipsum : I'm the person the monsters under your bed are hiding from.

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Subversive_plot

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #1 on: April 03, 2021, 18:56 »
That's great advice!

There are services now that will take old hard drives and literally shred them, while you wait. Often document-shredding companies can do this. Worth considering so that you can recycle with peace of mind.
Please stay safe!  Wear a mask, and observe social distancing!

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Plot 1 Problems

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #2 on: April 03, 2021, 20:24 »
All my old hard drives get drilled through repeatedly to shatter the disk before disposal. It's one thing I wont even consider recycling.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2021, 20:28 by Plot 1 Problems »

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Growster...

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2021, 05:37 »
I've still got most of my old hard drives, taken out from PCs which failed on other issues like the power input etc.

They can still be used as external storage with some simple attachment kit - I use this one - and it's very easy to use!

https://www.ebay.co.uk/c/598488058


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Lardman

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2021, 07:58 »
Most of these devices came from small computer shops, major second hand resellers and even E-waste recycle centres.  I assume the original owners had all been assured their data would be destroyed safely.  :mad: Not all were hard drives either - I had a full spread of devices from hard drives, SDD's,  microSD cards, USB drives etc, the only restriction that I wouldn't physically replace parts to recover data, I didn't think that was reasonable.

Physical destruction like drilling through the drive platters or nand chips will certainly do it  ;) as would a single pass overwriting all the data on the device - there are free apps to do easily, if you then want to recycle it rather than bin it. Just don't trust the local corner computer shop to do it for you and certainly don't just take it to the tip/recycling centre as is.

Secure data erasure or destruction is something I've always offered to my client (I produce a pdf certificate of destruction with the tracking IDs, device serial and photo for their records), I had no idea things were so bad retail wise as I've been entirely B2B. I notified the companies I had sourced the devices from but I've not had a response from any of them - no surprise ::)

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Growster...

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #5 on: April 05, 2021, 07:36 »
Can you just chuck them in a fire, Lards?


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Lardman

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #6 on: April 05, 2021, 09:29 »
Can you just chuck them in a fire, Lards?

It depends on how paranoid you are  :lol: it's going to destroy NAND based devices but there's a possibility that mechanical drives could be recovered - depends on the heat etc. I've only ever had 1 fire damaged hard drive in and that was more contamination from smoke than damage from heat.  No one is going to try to recover those sorts of devices, but with bitcoin being around 50K at the moment there are groups buying up devices and searching for lost wallets, whatever else they find is a bonus.


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jezza

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2021, 10:28 »
Hello where is the hard drive on a computer,my computer says there isn't enough disk space it needs something's removing havent a clue what it's on about   jezza

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Lardman

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2021, 10:42 »
my computer says there isn't enough disk space it needs something's removing

Windows 10? MS clean up instructions

Lots of Windows updates leave files behind, you might just need some house keeping done.

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al78

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Re: Think before you recycle.
« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2021, 17:00 »
At my workplace, it is a requirement to erase hard drives before disposal of IT equipment. The It department have a utility which writes random binary to the disk over and over and over again. Nothing is recoverable unless you use forensic methods.


 

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