Before disposing of any device or media, you should take steps to make sure you have removed all personal and other sensitive data from it. Vulnerable data that might be stolen from a device could include your bank or investment account number and password, your credit card numbers, information in databases, spreadsheets, tax software, and data from research projects.
If you use your personally owned device to access or work with sensitive U-M data, you are expected to secure it in compliance with Security of Personally Owned Devices That Access or Maintain Sensitive Institutional Data (SPG 601.33). This includes sanitizing it before disposal.
- Erasing U-M-Owned Devices. Information about how to properly dispose of U-M owned devices and media.
- Your Responsibilities for Protecting Sensitive Data When Using Your Own Devices. Guidance on use of personal devices with sensitive U-M data.
Erase Computers and Mobile Devices
The following resources provide how-to instructions for securely deleting data from university or personally owned computing devices and storage media.
- Securely Erase a Hard Drive with @ActiveKillDisk (Windows, Mac, Unix/Linux)
- iOS: What to Do Before Selling or Giving Away Your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch (Apple)
- Android: See item: Before You Sell or Give Away Your Device… in the Management section of Secure Your Android Device
- Chrome: Use Powerwash to Erase Your Device. See: Before You Sell or Give Away… in the Management section of Secure Your Google Chromebook
Securely Delete Files from Computers
Physical Destruction of Devices or Media for Secure Disposal
When devices or drives are inoperable, it may be necessary to destroy them to ensure secure disposal. Destruction may also be required by some laws or regulations governing certain types of data. See Destroy Devices and Media for instructions.