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What You Should Know About Degaussing of Hard Drives

However, this is not true. The truth is that you have not done away with the information. In fact, all one does when they delete such information from their computer is to erase the path that one can use to access the information. However, it is actually possible to erase data from your computer hard drive. You can actually erase data from your computer using three different techniques. One can physically destroy the drive, use a hard drive eraser or use degaussing to clear the drive.

Degaussing simply put is complete erasing of information on a drive. Degaussing is very popular considering the amount of sensitive information the needs to be permanently erased by various organizations. This method of doing away with data is different from others. Different from formatting or deleting information, degaussing uses special type of technology to ensure that data that was once stored on a hard drive is completely gone and never to be recovered. Below are some fact s you should know about hard drive degaussing.

Employs the Use of Magnetic Fields
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Degaussing is essentially the procedure by which a magnetic field is eliminated or decreases. This means it requires magnetic fields in order to erase information from magnetic storage devices such as discs and tapes. These devices have a fine coating of iron oxide and sometimes chromium oxide on the tape. During this degaussing process an intense magnetic field is generated. The magnetic memory stored on either the chromium oxide or the iron oxide is done away with completely because of the immense power of the magnetic field produced. The data stored on a disc is therefore destroyed completely because the magnetic field of the tape is changed. During this process, the recorded data pattern is either removed or randomized. This makes it impossible to recover the data.
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Safety Concerns

According the World Health Organization, there is no evidence that suggests any kind of harm can come from this type data destruction. This means people shouldn’t fear being exposed to these magnetic fields during the degaussing process.

The Speed of The Process

The process of degaussing might sound complicated and slow. However, contrary to what the name sounds like the process of erasing data is quick and simple.

Difference from Hard Drive Eraser

As already highlighted degaussing uses the help of a magnetic field to neutralize the magnetic charge in a drive. On the other hand, the so-called drive erasers simply overwrite the existing data making it impossible to forensically restore or decipher. Essentially, no erasing actually goes on in this process.