- Created: Monday, 18 October 2021
- Written by Jonathan Hobson
When giving away old computers it’s tempting to think - “All I need to do is just delete all the files, sorted.”
Unfortunately that’s not the case. When you delete a file, it actually just gets marked as deleted. There are plenty of free tools anyone can use to remove that deleted mark, making all the deleted files visible again. You also need to consider all the things that aren’t simple files, for example, saved logins to websites.
You may trust the person you give the computer to, but what happens when they’re finished with it? Whose hands might it end up in? In any case, the GDPR is quite clear that you should ensure all personal data is removed when a device is retired from the organisation.
The most fool proof way is to wipe the computer using a tool designed for that purpose. The operating system will need to be re-installed afterwards before the PC can be used again.
Many devices have a “restore to factory settings” option, but that relies on the manufacturer including a secure wipe during the process, many do not, or have it as an optional extra.
Engage telanova as your IT team and we will advise you so you can avoid potentially costly data protection mistakes.