Why would businesses be thinking of shredding hard drives this year?

Did you know that deleting a file from your laptop won’t get rid of it permanently? It’s just like deleting a directory and the file still exists somewhere where clever information thieves can find it.

That’s just one reason business owners and managers use this service. In fact, shredding hard drives has been an increasing trend over the past few years as people realise the potential dangers of data being left on old laptop and PC drives and removable media.

We predict even more business owners will want peace of mind when disposing of their old drives and 2020 will be a busy year for our metal shredder!

What are the reasons for this prediction?

There are three key reasons that 2020 is set to be a busy year for shredding hard drives:

  1. The Windows 7 upgrade

This month, Microsoft is ending its 10 years of product support for Windows 7 (January 14, 2020).

That means the company will discontinue Windows 7 support. The reason is that Microsoft wants to focus on investment in newer technologies with better user experiences.

Technical assistance and software updates which help to protect PCs will no longer be available and the company recommends moving swiftly to Windows 10.

Some businesses and large organisations are also using this opportunity to upgrade hardware alongside the software, as some older PCs will struggle with Windows 10.

  1. The effect of GDPR fines

Several large fines have now been issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office for breaches of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), some amounting to hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Businesses have seen that the ICO is taking data protection breaches seriously, whether that comes from poor cyber security or the insecure holding or dumping of documents or old hard drives and removable media such as smartphone SIMs or USB sticks.

Many businesses have been spurred into reviewing their practices to ensure they can provide an audit trail if there is an ICO investigation.

  1. Recycling has never been more important

Hard drives contain recyclable metals and other materials which could be re-used. Sometimes, they contain tiny amounts of precious metals such as platinum or gold.

Given the effect of metal mining on the planet, more and more businesses are looking at hard drive shredding and recycling as part of their move toward sustainability.

This is also increasingly important to their customers, too. Shredding and recycling the hard drive also allows businesses to recycle plastic laptop shells or donate them to charities without fear confidential data will be lost.

How does it work?

The old hard drives go into a shredding machine where they are reduced to small pieces and then mixed with other metal waste. Re-assembling a hard drive and obtaining data would be impossible after shredding.

This waste is then recycled and other metal products are created from it.

The business gets a certificate of destruction, proving it dealt with its data responsibly.

Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) regulations also mean this equipment must be dealt with responsibly, so the rest of the device can then be sent safely for recycling or refurbishment to comply with these rules.

Why choose On Time Shred when shredding hard drives?

  • We’re ICO accredited and our staff are vetted to BS-7858 and have CRB checks.
  • We operate to BSI standards for quality, environmental protection, health and safety, information security and destruction.
  • Our vehicles have GPS tracking and our secure shredding sites have 24-hour CCTV.
  • We also offer shredding at your site so your confidential waste doesn’t have to leave your premises for recycling until it is shredded.


Need our help shredding hard drives? Call our On-Time Shred experts on 0333 251 2349.