Safe Data Destruction 101: Why Data Disposal is Necessary

Many individuals and companies choose to purge their computer systems of irrelevant or outdated files in order to keep their computer storage organized. However, safe data destruction encompasses far more than simply clicking ‘delete’ on your perceived junk files, old media and important business data. Here, the safe data destruction specialists at Atlantic Data Forensics detail why proper data disposal is necessary to preserve your company’s digital integrity and ensure you remain compliant within the regulations of federal privacy legislation.

Proper Data Disposal is a Federal Requirement

Proper data disposal is not just convenient for organizational purposes—it is also a legal obligation for businesses. After a certain period of time, data needs to be permanently deleted from your computer systems and servers as a means of remaining compliant with federal privacy legislation regulations, and the act of destroying data must reach a step further than merely placing files in your desktop’s recycle bin. Data that is deleted in this capacity can still be retrieved from hard drives and tapes, as the data still exists in digital form—just in a different location than where it was previously stored. This may snowball into a significant security risk for your business, which has a duty to uphold the integrity of important data and properly dispose of it when it is no longer needed.

There are Three Important Techniques for Safe Data Disposal

When it is time to properly dispose of high-risk company data, it is important to follow these three methods for data destruction: overwriting, degaussing and destruction: 


There are several freeware programs that exist that allow safe data disposal specialists to properly overwrite their hard drives; overwriting hard drives is a convenient process as it allows those hard drives to be reused in the future. 


The second step of the safe data disposal process is the degaussing process, which allows you to magnetically erase data from hard drives and tapes; while this process will subsequently destroy the media on which the data is stored, it is a more secure method of destroying data compared to overwriting your drives. Safe data destruction specialists, such as the specialists at Atlantic Data Forensics, are skilled in the process of degaussing for purposes of data disposal and can assist you in the process of erasing your media when necessary. 


The last technique that specialists use to erase data in a safe and compliant manner is by physically destroying the hard drives that data exists on; this way, it is impossible to retrieve the data that was once accessible through that mechanism. This is the safest and most reliable way to ensure compliance with federal standards and guarantee your data will not fall into the wrong hands.

Learn More from a Data Forensics Specialist at Atlantic Data Forensics

Safe data destruction can be a nuanced concept for individuals that lack practical experience using computer software and managing important company data. That is why the safe data destruction specialists at Atlantic Data Forensics provide a wide range of services to help their clients properly dispose of their company data in a compliant and thorough way. To learn more about the many services provided by the professionals at Atlantic Data Forensics, as well as how our skilled team utilizes innovative software to complete the job, contact our Elkridge office.