How to Destroy Hard Drives the Extreme Way!
How Do You Destroy Your Old Hard Drives?
At Innovative Computer Systems we go to extremes to ensure your your sensitive data will never fall into the wrong hands, and our clients had fun doing it!
As a Managed IT Services Provider for Healthcare in NJ, NY and PA, we understand the importance of protecting your patient health records and ensuring patient confidentiality. Every day thousands of patient health records are compromised by weak security and misguided business technology practices. Did you know that old office copier or fax machine that you’re planning to replace probably contains a hard drive with hundreds or thousands of your patient health records and images stored on it? If not, you’re not alone. Practice administrators are experts in patient care, medical billing, and staffing but rely on a technology arm like Innovative Computer Systems to keep them apprised of these important facts to protect their practice and patients.
One of the many requirements for the Meaningful Use Security Risk Analysis Objective, in addition to encrypting all desktop and laptop hard drives, is permanently destroying old computer, server, and copier hard drives after those devices have been decommissioned from your network. Many people think that low level formatting or smashing a hard drive with a hammer is sufficient, but what they often don’t realize is that there are many data recovery techniques that can recover ePHI (electronic Protected Health Information) if the magnetic platters contained inside the drives aren’t permanently destroyed.
At Innovative Computer Systems, we offer an affordable hard drive destruction service to all of our contract clients. Included in this service is taking a before and after photograph of the drive and serial number, drilled holes in the drive data platters, proper disposal of the drive according to EPA regulations, and providing the client with pictures and a certification document for their Meaningful Use binder. This service, along with encryption of all computers and portable devices on their networks will certainly help keep the CMS Auditors at bay.
Over the years we’ve accumulated quite a few defective, abandoned, or decommissioned hard drives in our “to destroy” bin that were begging to be drilled full of holes. These drives fell outside the certified destruction guidelines, so we thought to ourselves “Instead of spending countless hours drilling holes through each drive, let’s take it one step further and let our clients shoot them full of holes!” Sounds extreme, right? Not to us.
This necessity sparked the idea for our first annual Client Appreciation and Team Building Event.
After a phone call to a local shooting range to present our extreme idea, which they gracefully agreed to, the stage was set for a tension releasing night at the range with 21 clients, vendors, friends and family, We provided over a ton of old laptops, computers, printers, fax machines, digital tapes, phones, several dozen hard drives and even two computer “gremlins”.
After everyone indulged in gourmet sandwiches, pasta salad, dessert pizza and refreshments the shooting range staff held a classroom session explaining basic gun safety and techniques to ensure everyone had a fun, and more importantly, safe night.
Plenty of range staff were there to instruct the novice and first-time shooters on how to load, aim and shoot the variety of pistols, rifles and shotguns provided by the range.
There were over a dozen rifles, shotguns, and pistols to choose from and several participants brought their own guns for this once in a lifetime grown-up shooting gallery experience.
After 2 hours, and 3000 rounds of ammunition later, there was nothing left but scrap metal and plastic littering the range floor and smiles on everyone’s faces.
These hard drives and fax machine never had a chance when they met their fate with a semi-automatic 12 gauge shotgun. We even dedicated a fax machine to someone special.
Overall, the event could not have gone any smoother and we’d like to thank everyone who pitched in to make it a huge success. We’re looking forward to our next client appreciation event in 2017, and hope you’ll join our family and choose Innovative Computer Systems as your Managed IT Service Provider.
Einstein said it best when he stated “Computers are fast, accurate and stupid. Humans are slow, inaccurate and brilliant. Together, they are powerful beyond belief.” If only Einstein shot at a virus infected laptop with a 12 gauge shotgun he would have added “Computers are so much fun to shoot at!”
DISCLAIMER: INNOVATIVE COMPUTER SYSTEMS DOES NOT CONDONE THE USE OF UNLICENSED FIREARMS, OR THE MISUSE OF FIREARMS IN AN UNSAFE OR UNMONITORED ENVIRONMENT. THIS EVENT WAS FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY, AND EVERYONE INVOLVED IN ORGANIZING AND RUNNING THIS EVENT WERE LICENSED PROFESSIONALS. ALL CORROSIVE AND TOXIC COMPONENTS FOUND IN COMMON COMPUTER ELECTRONICS AND PERIPHERALS WERE REMOVED PRIOR TO THE EVENT. DO NOT ATTEMPT ANYTHING SEEN IN THIS BLOG IN AN UNCONTROLLED ENVIRONMENT. GUNS ARE NOT TOYS AND SHOULD NEVER BE USED FOR TARGET PRACTICE BY CHILDREN WITHOUT DIRECT ADULT SUPERVISION AND PROPER HANDLING AND TRAINING.