From financial records to data on past clients, your business has information that needs to be kept out of the hands of potential criminals. Doing so is not as trivial as emptying the recycle bin on your computer, though. To truly ensure that sensitive data stays gone, you need to turn to more thorough methods of hard drive destruction Boston MA. Here are some of the basic facts on why secure data destruction is vital.

Deleting Files Isn’t Enough

A computer’s operating system uses “pointers” to identify where in the hard drive a given file starts and ends. This makes it possible to go to the relevant sectors to read data, as well as defining those sectors as off limits for writing new data from other files. When you delete a file, what actually happens is that the OS removes the associated pointer and marks the sectors as available to write to. This is a much faster operation than actually deleting all the data, but it does mean that, until it’s overwritten by new files, that data can still be recovered. Specialized software for permanently overwriting files, or outright destruction of the hard drive by degaussing or shredding, is necessary to genuinely destroy data.

The Consequences of Data Breaches

A data breach–whether it’s done by cyber attacks, theft of hard drives or unsolicited access from unscrupulous employees–burdens a company with serious, long-lasting consequences. In the short-term, this includes legal fees and compensation for clients hurt by the breach, as well as lost business due to downtime. Beyond this, a data breach jeopardizes the trust customers place in your business, because they now don’t know if their personal data is safe in your hands.

While a business can recover from the losses caused by a data breach, it’s far less costly to take measures to ensure the data can’t be stolen. By properly destroying old data that is no longer needed, you protect both your company and the clients you work with.