October 3rd, 2019

How to recycle your computer without recycling your personal data.

These days we use our computers for a lot more than writing essays and surfing the web. From family photos to names, addresses and log-in information, personal data is sprinkled throughout our hard drives. Add financial information from online purchases and banking and your old computer could be a treasure trove for identity thieves.

You can never fully erase a hard drive.

“There’s a common misconception when you reformat a hard drive that your data is completely erased,” says Jennifer Rinfret, Business Unit Manager for Technical Services at London Drugs, “Unfortunately there are technically savvy people out there with bad intent who are capable of going back into a reformatted hard drive and retrieving your personal data. You really need to fully destroy the hard drive to keep your data secure.”

Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock

Know where your recycling goes.

Not all recyclers are the same. Security levels and processes vary widely from place to place. It can be even more dangerous to just dump a computer in the alley or garbage. “If you’re just dumping your computer anywhere to be recycled, you really are putting your data at risk.” says Rinfret. “If you want to know it’s being recycled right, bring it to London Drugs.”

London Drugs recycling can make sure your data is secure.

When you bring a data-carrying device to London Drugs technical department for recycling, our team signs it in, removes the hard drive and sends it to be destroyed, usually within 24 hours. All of our electronics recycling partners are certified and have secure processes to properly handle data-carrying technology.
“We have system checks all the way through the process to ensure your data has been destroyed,” Rinfret says, “And all electronics are broken down into raw materials right here in Canada. Come in and visit our computer department. They will take you through the steps and make sure your data is not recycled along with your technology.”

Technician disassembling a computer in Canada at eCycle, a London Drugs recycling partner.

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