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Loyola University Chicago

Information Technology Services

Secure Deletion Procedure

SCOPE

This procedure applies to any electronic media which is required to be securely deleted because of the type of data it contains.


PURPOSE

This procedure covers the process for securely deleting electronic media which either currently contains or previously contained information classified as Loyola Protected data or Loyola Sensitive data, which will be refered to as "covered data" in this procedure.


PROCEDURE

Hard drives

When a computer with a hard drive containing covered data is replaced, it initially will be stored in accordance with the existing equipment replacement policy. When the hard drive would normally be placed back into circulation, it must first be securely deleted before this happens.

To securely delete a hard drive, an ITS technician will place the hard drive into a computer and boot a copy of an approved whole drive secure deletion tool, as listed in the appendix. The ITS technician will then run the program, performing one complete overwrite.

USB drives

When a USB drive containing covered data needs to be discarded, an ITS technician will attach the USB drive to a computer and run an approved granular secure deletion tool, as listed in the appendix. The ITS technician will then run the program, performing one complete overwrite.

Floppy diskettes, CD-Roms, DVD-Roms, and other similar media

When any form of media, which is inserted into a desktop drive, containing covered data needs to be discarded, the media must be physically destroyed. This is most easily accomplished by using a pair of scissors to cut the media in half. It is also acceptable to send the media through a shredding device. This does not need to be performed by an ITS technician.

Backup tapes

When a backup tape needs to be discarded, the backup tape must be sent through a degaussing device. Because it is difficult to determine which specific

files are on which specific tape, all backup tapes are subject to this policy. If an area has backup tapes but does not have a degaussing device, they can provide the backup tapes to ITS. An ITS technician will then degauss the backup tapes. Once the backup tapes are degaussed, they can be discarded.

Broken devices or media

If a device or piece of media is unable to be read, it must be either degaussed or physically destroyed. If an area is unsure of how to do so, or does not have a degaussing device, they can contact ITS. ITS will pickup the device or piece of media. The ITS technician will then either physically destroy the device or degauss it, depending on which is more appropriate.  

Network Devices

All network devices should have their configuration and vlan databases securely deleted when a network device (firewall, router, switch, etc) is decommissioned.  The process for a secure delete utilizes the following steps:

The last step is an important process to ensure that the files are permanently removed from flash memory.  Supported documentation may be found on Cisco's website.

Created: March 12, 2008

Author: J. Bazeley

Version: 1.1

Revisions:

3/10/10 - Updated deletion network device procedures



Loyola

Information Technology Services
1032 W. Sheridan Ave. · Chicago, IL 60660 · 773.508-4ITS

InfoServices@luc.edu

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