Do you need help safely recycling a computer?
You might have considered dropping that old desktop off or mailing it away without any extra hassle. Are you sure you know all the right steps you must take to safeguard your data?
In their 2020 cybersecurity report, the National Technology Security Coalition noted that large numbers of state and local public sector agencies suffered ransomware attacks. When you consider the sophistication of some of these attacks, imagine how dangerous it would be for your old computer to fall into the wrong hands.
We’re going to show you what you need to do to make sure bad actors can’t recover any of your information from your retired PC or Mac. Read on!
Back up Data
Computer recycling is a great idea because you’re sparing your local environment from pollution. Data security is of paramount importance though, since your work or personal files are all over that hard drive in ways you’d never know.
First thing’s first – you need to back up those files.
If the new computer has arrived, consider using a built-in or third-party service to transfer the contents of the hard drive. Otherwise, you’ll want to back up all that important data using a storage device such as a USB drive or an external hard drive if there’s a lot of it.
Consider a hard drive capable of faster transfer speeds or a secure cloud storage option, like iCloud, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc. Consider an encryption service to secure your data further, whether on a hard drive or in the cloud. Back up in 2 or 3 different secure locations for ultimate protection from data loss.
Sign Out of Accounts and Erase
We’ve dealt with data security, next up – data privacy. You need to sign out of all your online accounts and disconnect any devices, such as Bluetooth peripherals.
Whether you are using a PC, Mac, or another computer/device, look for a hard drive ‘erase all” or “factory reset” function. If you can’t find one, read reviews for a good third-party reset tool.
Drives that are encrypted (Windows and Mac) are sometimes secure enough to be erased alone. Both these operating systems also include secure-erase utilities that overwrite the entire contents with random information.
Recycle The Computer
If you’re sure you haven’t left any unprotected data on your machine, then you now need to know how to recycle a computer. If you aren’t sure, you must use a computer recycling service that also offers confidential data destruction.
Business computers may contain customer data too, so recycling protects your company’s reputation as well as the environment.
Recycling a Computer?
We’ve shown that before recycling that old computer, you need to take a few extra steps to ensure the security of your data. Don’t risk leaving any digital breadcrumbs behind for thieves and fraudsters to exploit.
If you’re recycling a computer, we can keep your data safe. We are an IT asset disposition service, and we offer computer recycling and confidential data destruction. Contact us today to request a quote.