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Information - Technology - Data carrier destruction

 

Data carrier destruction

Information on digital data carriers can be wiped with a Degausser or with an Eraser. In addition, data carriers can also be physically destroyed. Shredders, Crushers and Punchers are available for physical destruction.

It is important to realize that information is still present on a physically damaged data carrier. The information is only divided into smaller pieces. For example, a modern hard disk can contain up to several terabytes of information. Crushing, bending or puncturing the hard disk platters will not remove the information. A 1x1 cm hard disk platter fragment can contain gigabytes of information. With physical destruction of data carriers, the smaller the fragments, the more time and effort is needed to reconstruct the information. This is defined in the DIN 66399 standard;

DIN 66399 Norm - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standardDIN 66399 norm
The DIN 66399 standard, developed by the Deutsches Institut für Normung (DIN), is a standard developed in 2013 for destroying all types of data carriers. The DIN 66399 standard defines three protection classes, seven safety levels and six material classifications;


DIN 66399 - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard


Protection class
The DIN 66399 standard has three protection classes. These determine to what extent the data must be protected on a data carrier;

- Protection class 1 Normal protection of internal data
- Protection class 2 Higher protection of confidential data
- Protection class 3 Very high protection of confidential and secret data

Security level
Seven safety levels are derived from the three protection classes. These safety levels determine the amount of effort and resources needed to reproduce information on a destroyed data carrier;

- Security level 1 Reproduction of data requires simple effort
- Security level 2 Reproduction of data requires special effort and tools
- Security level 3 Reproduction of data requires considerable effort (labor, time, tools)
- Security level 4 Reproduction of data requires exceptional effort and unusual tools
- Security level 5 Reproduction of data only possible with unusual tools
- Security level 6 Reproduction of data is unlikely with current state of technology
- Security level 7 Reproduction of data is impossible with current state of technology

Material classification
The various types of data carriers are divided according to the DIN 66399 standard into the following six categories;

- Material classification P Original size (paper, film printing plates)
- Material classification F Reduced (microfilm)
- Material classification O Optical data carriers (CD, DVD, Blu-Ray)
- Material classification T Magnetic data carriers (tapes, floppy disks, credit cards)
- Material classification H Hard disk drives
- Material classification E Electronic data carriers (USB stick, SSD's, memory cards)

Shredders - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standardShredders
A shredder is used to grind data carriers in small fragments. For this purpose hardened steel knives that rotate in the opposite direction are used. There are shredders for various types of data carriers; paper and cardboard, optical media (CD, DVD, Blu-Ray), flash memory (USB sticks, memory cards), tapes (audio, video, data), credit cards, smartphones, tablets, SSD's and hard disks.

Not every shredder is suitable for all types of data carriers and materials. For the grinding of the metal housing of a hard disk, for example, much more power is needed than for shredding paper. The DIN 66399 standard specifies which materials a shredder can process to which safety level.

Hard disk drive shredders - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard
Hard disk drive crushers - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard

Crushers - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standardCrushers
Crushers are specifically developed to physically damage hard drives. A crusher uses a metal wedge to bend a hard disk over it's length in a 90 degree angle. The metal wedge is pressed down with a great force. This damages the platters, read heads, electric motor and electronics of the hard disk so that it is no longer accessible. A crusher is often used as a second step in the hard disk destruction process. First a hard disk is erased with a degausser after which it is physically destroyed with a crusher. This provides an optical verification that a hard disk has been destroyed and is ready to be disposed of.

Some crushers optionally offer a module that can also destroy SSD's (Solid State Drive). An SSD is placed in the metal module after which it is compressed by the crusher. Depending on the specific model, the SSD is pierced in several places with metal pins or cracked into a wave pattern. Both methods ensure that all individual SSD memory chips are damaged.

Hard drive crushers - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard

Punchers - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standardPunchers
A puncher uses a hardened steel pin to pierce hard drives. When piercing a hard disk drive, the platters, readheads, electric motor and electronics of the hard disk are damaged so that it is no longer accessible. A puncher is often used as a second step in the hard disk destruction process. First a hard disk is erased with a degausser after which it is physically destroyed with a puncher.

Hard disk drive punchers - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard
  • Documentation - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard DIN 66399 Norm
    Language: EN - File: 0,1 MB
  • Documentation - destroying data carriers using shredder crusher din 66399 standard FlashPro Particle Study
    Language: EN - File: 0,1 MB


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