Most things come with a lifespan and same is the case with computers. With time, you may not want to deal with your old machine when you can buy a faster and advanced computer at an affordable price. When you bring the supersonic and lightweight PC at home, you would not want to see the sluggish and bulky space-eating system on the table. At this time, you may think of wiping the hard disk and throw it away. However, it is important to know that clearing the data on your hard disk doesn’t work until the empty space is overwritten. If the machine is occupied by a hacker, he may take out every bit of information that was ever there.
To help you get rid of the old computer, we are going to discuss 7 methodical ways to dispose it off safely
1. Delete and Overwrite Sensitive Files: For all the confidential files, make sure you employ a dedicated tool that shreds the file permanently off your computer. You must ensure that you comply with the Govt. norms for secure deletion. If the machine has an SSD, make sure you encrypt your drive. For older Macs, you may use Secure Empty Trash after deleting the files.
2. Drive encryption: If you’ve got a Windows PC with SSD, you can encrypt it by going to Settings > About. There, you may find the data encryption option or Bitlocker to go ahead with the encryption process. For Mac, you can encrypt the SSD from System Preferences > Security & Privacy > FileVault > Turn On FileVault with a password followed by a restart.
3. Deauthorize the Computer: The programs that allow a finite number of machines and systems to be operated are required to be deauthorized from the old computer. Your iTunes and Office 365 are examples of the tools that need to be removed carefully.
4. Clear the Browsing History: Many browsers not only save your browsing history but also the ids and passwords for different websites. It may also include your banking websites and other Govt. portals. If you don’t want any stranger to know these details, ensure clearing the browsing history from your old computer.
5. Follow Data Disposal Policy: If you work for an organization, you must consult the IT department or the human resource department to know about the data disposal policy. Business organizations have their own processes and guidelines to deal with an old machine or its replacement. The ultimate goal of this policy is to safeguard the confidential information that might be on your system along with the paid tools.
6. Uninstall your Programs and Personal Data: While replacing an old machine with a new one, it is important that you remove your personal data as well as software from it. It is also important when you’re allowed one license copy per computer.
7. Wipe your Hard Disk: Once you’re done with all the changes and uninstallation of licensed and personal tools, this is the time when you perform a disk format. You may also consider the Factory Reset option available on your machine. If you fear of committing mistake, use a dedicated software from the Internet to do the cleaning job.
Overall, physically destroying something looks easier than going through the process of disposing of an old computer. Although, you must know that computers may adversely affect the ecosystem and should be recycled. If you don’t possess any confidential information, you may consider shipping it away to poor nations, where it could help children in studies and research. If you know some good recycling ideas, do let us know in the comments section below.