by Andre Bourque

Deletion is not destruction: ensuring the permanent removal of data

Feb 14, 2017

Data destruction must be absolute, banishing any uncertainties among executives or worries among consumers. rn

Some words of warning to all armchair data security “experts:” The Delete button is not a substitute for destruction; it no more eliminates data than a pink eraser removes magic marker, or a magic wand has the power to do anything more than — to ever be anything more than — a cheap prop.

And yet, these same people furiously press that button, in an attempt at some kind of false self-confidence.

Perhaps they think that a simple tap will make a surplus of data — from private and public correspondence to personal health records to digital documents to minutes of business meetings to confidential files to government intelligence — disappear. 

Now, think of the effects of not destroying that data.

Imagine the hacks and breaches, the acts of cybercrime and general thievery, in which the existence of this data compromises the economic stability of entire nations and peoples.

Picture the chaos that would ensue from such a scenario.

The financial cost alone is nearly $6 million per breached organization.

That figure can bankrupt many small businesses, while forcing other companies to order mass layoffs or temporarily close.

Independent studies of breached organizations further report that the vast majority of these groups had no way to alert executives of an active breach. It is this absence of any kind of security system that enables a breach to go undetected for at least 150 days or more.

Given the severity of this problem, there is a clear need for a military-grade solution that destroys data — comprehensively and convincingly, beyond any shred, so to speak, of doubt — for the benefit of companies and consumers alike.

For example: The commission of secure hard drive shredding is proof unto itself, meaning, a client can witness the arrival of shredding trucks and the departure of all destroyed computers, servers, terminals and more.

This service, which is otherwise the exclusive province of the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), can determine a company’s success or failure — it is the distinction that strengthens an organization’s credibility in the marketplace or weakens its reputation with customers worldwide.

Gaston Wilder, executive vice president of business development at Data Destruction Inc., says:

“Secure data destruction is an indispensable part of IT asset disposition. The e-waste recycling process is incomplete without it. Giving companies their choice of data destruction, be it mail-in services or onsite hard drive shredding, is critical, too. The solution must reflect the needs of each institution’s preferred level of data destruction”

This attention to detail is of the highest importance for HIPAA-compliant data destruction, since doctors and patients — in addition to laboratories, researchers, scientists and insurers — cannot leave this material vulnerable for online criminals to gather or exploit.

Data destruction must be absolute, banishing any uncertainties among executives or worries among consumers.

Accomplishing that mission is one thing, while promoting greater knowledge of this issue is something else altogether.

Let us do what is necessary — let us do what is right — to guarantee we can destroy data without any delays or fears.