What is a Hard-Drive Shredder?
Hard-drive shredders are used to destroy hard drives so that the stored information cannot be recovered. There are several types of hard drive shredders.
SSD (Solid State Drive) Shredders
SSD shredders produce smaller shred sizes to provide destruction of the smaller sized SSDs and their circuits. A 5/16” shred size meets SSD destruction requirements for most companies. Smaller shred sizes are available although it is not a common requirement.
Shredding is accomplished by the SSDs being pulled between two close-tolerance counter rotating shafts with specially designed cutters and cutter assemblies. The SSDs are sheared into particles that are the thickness of the cutters. Points on the cutters limit the particles’ length. If a smaller shred size is required, the shredded material can be set up to pass through a secondary inline shredding process to provide a final 2-mm or smaller shred size.
HDD (Hard Disk Drive) Shredders
HDDs store data on a magnetic rotating platter and are significantly larger than SSDs. They are very dense and include stainless steel. Therefore, they are significantly tougher to shred and higher cutting forces are required. A resulting shred size of 3/4” is largely considered securely destroyed.
Since HDDs are less reliable, slower and physically larger than SSDs, they are found in fewer devices each year. Eventually, it is likely that HDDs will be completely replaced by SSDs as the price difference between the two drives becomes less distinct. A purchaser of a hard-drive shredder should consider the increasing need to shred SSDs to avoid purchasing equipment with quickly diminishing utility.
SSD-HDD Combination Shredders
SSD-HDD combination shredders allow for both types of drives to be properly destroyed. Though HDDs will continue to be used less frequently on new devices, the prevalence of HDDs in older devices assures that they will need to be destroyed for years to come as these older devices continue to be removed from service.
Additional electronic items can also be shredded based on the specific shredder model. Advice should be obtained on which additional electronic items can be shredded by a given model.