Secure destruction of computer disks

It is University of Delaware policy that information must be completely erased from a computer or device’s hard disk before that computer or device is disposed of.

Hard Drive after going through the hard drive punch
3.5 inch disk drive that has been through UD's hard drive punch to destroy the disk platter. Note that this is the complete disk unit and that it has not been dissassembled. (Click small image to view a larger version.)

When completing a UD Equipment Activity Web Form, the department that owns a computer or device that contains digital storage, must certify that the information has been securely erased. If you choose to have old disks destroyed, IT provides this service at no charge.

However, you will need to bring the disks to be destroyed to the UD Computing Center (192 South Chapel Street).

The University has purchased a pair of two-stage disk destruction systems that include a degaussing unit and a hard drive punch that makes the disk platter unusable. The destruction systems will work with both standard 3.5" and 2.5" drives.

The systems UD purchased are more environmentally friendly than ones that shred a hard disk into hundreds of pieces. Those units make it difficult to recycle or dispose of a discarded drive safely.

Instructions

  1. Contact the IT Support Center to set up an appointment to bring your department's disks to the Computing Center. Call (302) 831-6000 or submit an online Help Request form.
  2. Remove the 2.5" or 3.5" drives from the computers or devices.
    • Bring the complete disk unit.
    • Remove rails and other mounting hardware.
    • Do not remove the disk platter from the drive unit.
    • Do not remove the disk unit's "cover."
  3. Deliver your disks to the staff in IT Operations at the agreed upon time.
    • Come to the Wyoming Road door on the south side of the Computing Center.
    • Use a cell phone or the phone in the lobby to call Operations at (302) 831-6006.
  4. You may choose to watch as your computer disks are destroyed.

Search IT Help

My UD Search for forms & applications.