Safe PC Disposal
few years most people replace their old PC’s. When PC’s
that are no longer needed start taking up space in landfills, they not
only pose an environmental threat but also threat to personal privacy.
Most PC’s made in the past several years may not be able to run
the latest games and other programs, but are still useful for
e-mailing, web surfing and word processing. Reusing older PC’s
helps prevent fighting over computer time between family members.
Because of the lower power consumption of laptop PC’s, an older
laptop is the perfect candidate to be reused as a print server of so
that the entire family print out their documents using only one
Once a computer gets too old to be reused in the home then the problem of what to do with it arises. Many municipal landfills now ban computers because of the many toxic substances that PC’s contain. Recycling programs for computers are becoming a reality in more and more communities but are not available everywhere yet. Many charities now accept computers as donations There are many organizations that just take computers to refurbish and distribute to low-income families, other charities, seniors and anybody who can’t normally afford to buy a computer at a retail store. Donated computers are reused if they can, but those that can’t are sent to be recycled. Charity thrift stores such as Goodwill are a good place to take computer that is no longer needed if no other reuse or recycling options cannot be found.
Your computer carries a lot of personal data about you such as income tax returns old resumes, and other potentially sensitive documents. But when it comes time to replace it, all that personal data if it falls into the wrong hands can be used for identity theft. Proper decommissioning is essential to ensure that old data cannot be used against the former owners. Most people think that if they reformat the hard drive will be good enough to prevent identity theft. There are many forensic data recovery programs that can bring back old data even after reformatting the drive. Low-level wiping utilities write random data on the drive several times in order to make impossible to recover data. Most of these programs are used by government departments, corporations and the military they can cost thousands of dollars. Securely wiping a hard drive to get rid of personal data doesn’t require spending any money at all. A program called "Darik’s Boot and Nuke" will do the job and it’s free. Go to http://www.dban.org there you can download the files needed to make a floppy or CD that will startup the computer and load the boot and nuke program and wipe the hard drive.
Computers have brought in the past few years still have a few more productive years in your home or in the homes of many who may not be as fortunate. For those computers that cannot be reused many recycling facilities are close at hand.
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