Leading up to the release of the LCC Information Disposal Guide, a series of articles about the disposal of documents and data at LCC was included in The Star newsletter. This is Part 3 of the series.
In Part 1 of this article series, there were two questions presented that need to be answered before disposing of materials: “Can the materials be disposed of yet?” and “Do the records contain private or confidential information?” In Part 2 of this article series, we reviewed the three options for disposing of paper materials: shred, recycle or toss.
For the disposal of digital or magnetic media, the two questions from Part 1 still need to be answered, but the disposal process will be different from that of paper materials.
There are two components to digital or magnetic media: the digital component (the file/data) and the physical component (the container).
Individual files and folders on hard drives and USB devices can be “shredded” using Spirion (formerly Identity Finder). The Spirion/Identity Finder software provides a better option than simply clicking delete because it uses multiple levels of deletion so that files cannot be recovered.
Use the following steps to “shred” digital materials when they’re eligible for disposal:
- Open Spirion/Identity Finder – click Start, then All Programs. If it doesn’t show up in the menu, search for it using the search box at the bottom of the start menu.
- Click the Tools tab (along the top).
- Click File Shredder.
- Add the files you want to “shred” and then click Shred.
NOTE: It is also important that these steps are followed before any device is reused.
Disposing of physical media such as USB devices, CD/DVD discs or floppy disks can be done by using one of the suggested options below. For large quantities, there is also the option of having your Divisional Operations (Div Ops) personnel complete an online work request (through FAMIS) to have the materials picked up by Moving Services in the Physical Plant.
- USB Devices:
The memory chip inside the device needs to be damaged beyond repair, which means breaking the device.
- Use pliers or scissors to crack the casing of the device open and then crush or cut the memory chip.
- Use a hammer to crack the device and the memory chip, or for less mess and more accuracy, use a hammer to drive a nail through the device.
- Place the device under the leg of an office chair and sit down … hard.
- CD/DVD Discs:
The label of the disc, the side where the data is recorded, needs to be scratched or damaged enough to make it unreadable. Some paper shredders are capable of destroying discs, but if that’s not an option there are other ways to damage discs.
- Scratch the writing surface with sandpaper, scissors, a screwdriver or by using your foot to rub it across the pavement.
- Break or cut the disc in half with scissors. (Be careful as this might create sharp edges or disc shards).
- Floppy Disks:
The film within the floppy disk needs to be destroyed in order to ensure the materials can’t be reproduced.
- Open the metal slider, pull out the film and then cut it. If the film won’t pull out of the opening, remove the slider and crack the case open to remove and then cut the film.
Whenever possible, delete the digital materials from the disc or device before disposing of the physical component. This will provide the necessary assurance the materials are declassified and destroyed beyond recognition and reconstruction in compliance with LCC’s Information Security Policy.
And Now …
The official LCC Information Disposal Guide is available for your use. It includes the information shared in all three articles that appeared in The Star Newsletter along with additional details in each section. For questions about the disposal guide or other records topics, please contact Linnea Knapp, LCC’s Records Information Specialist at email@example.com.