The Best Way to Destroy a Hard Drive

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Computers, and the hard within them, contain everything from our pet photos to sensitive financial information. It’s a wealth of knowledge we build up over the computer’s lifespan, but that technology doesn’t work forever. To make sure that any sensitive data, or picture of a particularly shy pet, you need to destroy that hard drive in the best way possible. 

How a Hard Drive Gets Destroyed and Recycled

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The first step in any hard drive or memory drive destruction, ironically, should be recovery. Saving those priceless family photos, passwords, to various accounts, and anything else that you want to keep should be done before you begin the proper destruction process. If your computer still works, you can do this by uploading it to a cloud platform, downloading it onto USB drives, or by directly connecting to another computer. 

If it doesn’t, you can either download hard drive recovery software, or hand it off to a computer repair shop. 

Once you’re transferred over all your files, the destruction process begins. While there are a few different options, the best way to destroy a hard drive remains shredding it. Shredding your hard drive ensures the irreversible destruction of your data, and ensures that the components that make it up get recycled properly. 

Unless you possess an industrial shredding machine, you’ll either need a mobile shredding option, or you can drop it off at a local shredding facility. There, they can shred it in front of you, usually for around $10. They’ll then hand you a certificate of destruction, and get to work on recycling the components that make up the hard drive. 

Why You Can’t Just Destroy a Hard Drive at Home 

It’s certainly tempting to take a hammer to an old computer when it stops working. Taking out a year of frustration over your computer being slow is cathartic, but it doesn’t solve the problem of what to do with it after. The components that make up a hard drive shouldn’t be thrown in the trash, and require specialized recycling. 

It might not seem like a big deal to toss an old hard drive in the trash, but it contributes to a growing e-waste problem. However, if you do want to destroy it yourself, make sure you take it to a recycling company certified to handle electronic waste. 

Destroy Your Hard Drive With Shred Nations 

Shred Nations makes hard drive destruction easy, with locations and partners all over the country. You can give us a call at (800) 747-3365, or fill out the form on the page, and we’ll find a hard drive shredding solution that works for you.