What Role Does Data Destruction Play in Cybersecurity?

April 12th, 2022

role of data destruction in cyber security

When most people think of cyber security, they imagine complicated passwords, authentication systems, or virtual firewalls that prevent malicious entities from accessing private information. While those programs undoubtedly play an important role, data destruction is also incredibly crucial to keeping data safe. This is the process of destroying data so that it’s no longer accessible.

In the past, data destruction wasn’t much more than shredding papers to make their contents unreadable. However, in the digital age where everything is stored virtually, it won’t be enough to simply delete files; companies must devote more time to ensuring that the private information stored on their technology has been sufficiently erased. To learn more, here’s how data destruction and cybersecurity are interconnected with one another.

The Dangers of Not Destroying Data

It is incredibly common for companies to store the personal data of their business, their clients, and their partners on digital devices. This information can include everything from financial data, private medical details, and legal matters. Thorough data destruction is vital so that such personal information does not fall into the wrong hands.

Cybercriminals on the internet are constantly searching for ways to access sensitive data and profit from it. Even information contained in devices that are resting in storage is at risk of theft, meaning that companies have an incentive to thoroughly erase the data of technology they don’t plan to use anymore. Should cyber thieves access this information, it can result in hacks, identity theft, and other issues no business wants to experience.

In some instances, second-hand software may still contain private information that ends up in possession of the device’s new owner. These circumstances are especially true for those who retrieve unwanted technology from a dumpster or who pick up laptops, USBs, or other devices that were left behind by accident.

Always Follow Data Erasure Regulations

As a result of these risk factors, regulatory laws have been established regarding data destruction so that companies are held responsible for the personal data they store. These data storage regulations ensure that no sensitive info is leaked and causes unwanted harm to an individual or company. Therefore, companies must make proper data destruction a priority; otherwise, regulators who find they are not correctly handling the data can issue significant fines.

Choosing the Right Data Destruction Method

Because different kinds of hardware can store data, such as company laptops or hard drives, various data destruction techniques must be implemented. These can range from overwriting the data, using magnetic fields to scramble the information to make it unreadable, or physical destruction of the device, among other methods.

Companies must determine what method of data destruction is best for their circumstances, and numerous factors can decide which avenue they choose. For example, if they want to destroy several storage devices at once, then it will take longer to complete the process. Or, if they wish to repurpose the devices to save money, they’ll need to destroy the data in a manner that does not damage the hardware.

If your business is researching data destruction companies to help with their cybersecurity, reach out to Keystone Technology Management. We offer multiple services, including computer liquidation and hardware acquisitions. Contact us today to learn how we can help your company.