Data Destruction Certificate: What is it, and Why is it Important?

A data destruction certificate, also referred to as a Certificate of Destruction, is a crucial part of the technology destruction or recycling process. The certificate guarantees that all of the data on a piece of technology was properly destroyed.  With data breaches and cyber crimes on the rise, this guarantee is more important than ever. 

What is a Data Destruction Certificate?

The actual data destruction certificate differs based on the company doing the work. However, most follow the template set below. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) provides a framework for best practices in media and data destruction. 

Data Destruction Certificate example
Example of a Data Destruction Certificate, courtesy of NIST

The certificate typically contains the person and provider performing the service, information about the type of media they’re destroying, a section on the type of destruction, and its final destination. There will also be a section for signatures for confirmation of the transfer. 

While NIST and other organizations provide a framework and best practices, no agency provides certification for data destruction. A data destruction certificate does protect against liability and peace of mind, but a company should also make sure the data destruction provider is trustworthy and legitimate. ShredTronics helps with that. 

How Data Gets Destroyed 

Just as there is no uniform data destruction certificate, there is also no uniform data destruction process. Companies typically choose from one of three options, each providing different levels of security. 

Wipes or Erasure 

Wipes and data erasure processes vary, but fundamentally, they’re based on deleting and overwriting the memory drive. The gold standard is now the NIST method, but the DoD method is still effective. While modern data-wiping techniques are effective, if not done properly, you can still recover the data. 

Degaussing

Degaussing uses magnets to wipe data on a hard drive. When a hard drive spins, it creates a magnetic field. A degaussing machine creates a stronger magnetic field, and this wipes the data stored on the hard drive. However, this process can be time-consuming and expensive, and information can still be left behind. 

Shredding 

Shredding is a straightforward data destruction process. The storage device goes through a dedicated shredding machine, which physically destroys the device. The shredding renders both the storage device and any data on it completely inoperable. While shredding a device does mean it won’t be immediately reusable, recyclers can reuse nearly everything in the hard drive. 

ShredTronics Can Provide You With a Data Destruction Certificate  

No matter what type of device you’re trying to destroy or recycle, ShredTronics can help. We partner with verified and trusted companies across the country to provide you with secure and affordable options for your data destruction needs. Call us at (844) 648-4908, or fill out the form on the page, and we’ll find the right provider for you within minutes.