Everything You Need To Know About Hard Drive Destruction

Posted on

Jan 30th, 2023



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You may know that it’s crucial to remove information from hard drives before disposing of them- but do you know the ins and outs of what that means? At Securis, we have the answers. 

What’s the Best Way to Destroy a Hard Drive?

There are two common ways to destroy hard drives and render the confidential information that remains on them inaccessible: degaussing and shredding.

Degaussing Hard Drives


Degaussing hard drives can be the first (or only) step in data destruction. The degaussing process erases data, changing the magnetic domain in which data is stored. Using magnets, it scrambles stored information so it can not be retrieved. Keep in mind that degaussing does not work for solid state drives (SSDs). A previous Securis article contains information on destroying SSDs. 

Shredding Hard Drives

hard drive shredding

Shredding hard drives ensures that all information is totally destroyed and rendered unusable. By completing this as a stand-alone service or following degaussing, you can be positive that your confidential information has been completely destroyed. Not only does this guarantee total data destruction, but you can be sure that degaussed hard drives will not be confused with hard drives that still have data on them. 

Solid state drives are destroyed by microshredders so they do not slip through the cracks in a regular hard drive shredder.

Can Information be Retrieved from a Shredded Hard Drive?

There is no way to retrieve information from a shredded hard drive if the correct shredding process is followed. By grinding and shredding, materials like magnetic fields and magnetic tapes can no longer be put back together in order to recover information. 

How Much Does it Cost to Shred a Hard Drive? 

For residential customers, our Virginia locations hold monthly drop-off events where hard drives can be shredded for $5 each or $10 if they are still inside a computer. 

For our corporate customers, we know that data security is vital, so we provide various hard drive shredding services. If chain of custody issues are of concern, we can bring our mobile shredding truck on-site for supervised destruction. 

We also offer off-site shredding to those who need assurance that their assets will be destroyed appropriately but need the equipment out of their office or space quickly. With either service, Securis will provide a certificate of destruction for reporting purposes. Prices vary depending on the services needed.