Which? Recommend Total Hard Drive Destruction

  Taff™ 12:55 08 Jan 09

Just picked up on this story featured on Five Live click here

Apparently Which? are recommending that Hard Disks be removed and smashed to bits before passing on your old computer. What do we on the forum think?

  Si_L 13:18 08 Jan 09

Finally, a proper excuse to smash stuff up.

I agree, I would destroy mine if I ever sold my PC. I don't want people nosing around in my stuff.

  wee eddie 13:56 08 Jan 09

and seem to carry on for yonks.

About 8 years ago, I did put one in a Vice, which proved a very effective way of crushing it.

  Stuartli 14:03 08 Jan 09

Actually it's Which? Computing, a sister publication, which offers the advice in its just out Security Special.

It points out that data can be recovered from hard drives that have seemingly been "wiped" by using freely available software.

So its best advice is to smash an unwanted hard drive with a hammer ("don't forget your protective glasses"!)

An extreme solution admits Which? Computing, but at least you would know that the data has gone for ever.

However, we may know better..:-)

click here

click here

Many other examples.

  interzone55 17:27 08 Jan 09

If someone is determined enough to try to recover my data after it's been over written 7 times with random data, they're welcome to it....

  MAT ALAN 18:23 08 Jan 09

click here

Ya want some of these "BAD BOYS" YEEE HAAA!!!!!

  Forum Editor 18:28 08 Jan 09

with the hard drive still inside. I always do exactly as the article suggests - I smash the drive with a hammer.

  Demora 19:15 08 Jan 09

My Daughters Boyfriend took my last hard drive apart and made her a lovely handbag mirror.

My other old Hdds I keep and connect up to my current pc and use as external storage.


  robgf 19:27 08 Jan 09

The article goes from one extreme, to the other. Saying smash your hard drive, which is over the top (and a waste of a good HD).
Then saying most users would be safe just formatting the HD. Which doesn't wipe the data at all!!

As alan14 says, overwriting your data is quite sufficient for most of us and probably even if your 007.

  wolfie3000 21:43 08 Jan 09

seems a bit wasteful to just smash up a hard drive, my last pc i took the drive out formatted it and put it into an external case for backups.

  recap 21:59 08 Jan 09

I was once informed to rewrite the hard drive with 00011110011000 and so on. This was from an IT security advisor. But that only overwrites the last install/data.

There are organisations that use powerful electro magnets to wipe hard drives but this is an expensive way.

In my last job we were looking in to this to run a project on for the recycling of PC's. We found that the best way to totally destroy the hard drive was with a hammer, nothing new there then.

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