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MagnusM
Premium
join:2001-07-07

2 recommendations

How Google wipes their hard drives

So this picture is from a Google data center:




What you see here are 2.0 TB Western Digital Black drives... with a big hole in the middle where the hard drive platters used to be. So if you really want that extra piece of mind, don't just wipe the data... destroy the drives the Google way!

The full set of images from the data center is available at »imgur.com/a/xQPKq - really fascinating to look at.

How do you destroy the data on old drives?
--
Mischel Internet Security - Developer of TrojanHunter

lorennerol
Premium
join:2003-10-29
Seattle, WA

We tell clients we can do a chargeable DoD compliant erase for them, or they can work out some angst with a sledge hammer on their garage floor. I guess Google is copying us.



MagnusM
Premium
join:2001-07-07

said by lorennerol:

We tell clients we can do a chargeable DoD compliant erase for them, or they can work out some angst with a sledge hammer on their garage floor. I guess Google is copying us.

"So do you want the expensive and boring suggestion or the cheap and fun one?"
--
Mischel Internet Security - Developer of TrojanHunter


Name Game
Premium
join:2002-07-07
Grand Rapids, MI
kudos:7

How do you cool your server ?
»www.google.com/about/datacenters···s/hamina



Name Game
Premium
join:2002-07-07
Grand Rapids, MI
kudos:7

1 recommendation

reply to MagnusM

Google Offers Virtual Street View Tours of its NC Data Center

Easter eggs abound on a hunt on a virtual reality tour of Google's server farm

Google Inc. (GOOG) long was seriously secret about its data centers. But in recent years it has performed an abrupt about face. Secure in its dominant position, it has actually become one of the most open internet companies in terms of revealing the secrets that make its data centers so efficient (Facebook, Inc. (FB) is another giant who has practiced similar open-sourcing policies).

To commemorate its $600M USD Lenoir, North Carolina data center (constructed in 2007), Google has posted a gallery dubbed "Where the Internet Lives". The pages are filled with stunning photos by Connie Zhou, including employee profiles, which introduce the public to some of Google's thousands of data center professionals.

Better yet, Google has offered up virtual Street View tours of the exterior and interior of its data centers.

The inside views are pretty neat, and there's plenty of Easter Eggs to be found (say the odd Android) -- and a number of employees on the job:

»www.dailytech.com/Google+Offers+···7970.htm
--
Gladiator Security Forum
»www.gladiator-antivirus.com/


StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2
reply to MagnusM

So they destroy the drives after Bob reads everything from them?
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!



MagnusM
Premium
join:2001-07-07

said by StuartMW:

So they destroy the drives after Bob reads everything from them?

Yes, and then the scraps are shipped straight to the NSA so they can have a go
--
Mischel Internet Security - Developer of TrojanHunter


StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2

Um, Bob is the NSA.

»Re: Fake tech reps calling



MagnusM
Premium
join:2001-07-07

Thought you were talking about Alice's friend... been reading too much Schneier lately



Name Game
Premium
join:2002-07-07
Grand Rapids, MI
kudos:7

Bob just wants the juicy bit..he thinks Carol and Ted have this thing going and Bruce won't tell him all the details.



StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2

1 edit

Well Bob gets antsy when he doesn't know stuff. Turns up in a windowless grey van with absolutely no markings, crawls up and down your street numerous times, parks outside your residence and sits in his van for half-an-hour playing with his electronic toys. Interestingly he never got out of the van before driving off. Oh wait, I'm sure that was just a lost tourist.

If that van ever comes back I'm going to have some fun by walking up to it with a camera in one hand and a notebook in another. "Can I help you?".
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!



KodiacZiller
Premium
join:2008-09-04
73368
kudos:2
reply to lorennerol

said by lorennerol:

We tell clients we can do a chargeable DoD compliant erase for them, or they can work out some angst with a sledge hammer on their garage floor. I guess Google is copying us.


Who would pay for someone to run D-ban for them?
--
Getting people to stop using windows is more or less the same as trying to get people to stop smoking tobacco products. They dont want to change; they are happy with slowly dying inside. -- munky99999


vaxvms
ferroequine fan
Premium
join:2005-03-01
Wormtown
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Charter
reply to MagnusM

Inside a Google Data Center. Includes a clip of a disk being destroyed
»www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl···5d16wEp0
--
It's not really power unless you abuse it.



Cartel
Premium
join:2006-09-13
Chilliwack, BC
kudos:2
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
·Shaw
·TELUS

All those drives have been backed-up on the dolphins...

What do you think all those pipes are for?

dolphins tanks.




Dustyn
Premium
join:2003-02-26
Ontario, CAN
kudos:11

1 recommendation

reply to MagnusM

said by MagnusM:

How do you destroy the data on old drives?


1.80MB ANIMATED .GIF

Fire. And lot's of it.


Blackbird
Built for Speed
Premium
join:2005-01-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:3
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
reply to StuartMW

said by StuartMW:

If that van ever comes back I'm going to have some fun by walking up to it with a camera in one hand and a notebook in another. "Can I help you?".

Won't ever happen. Having gotten all the close-in data he needs, Bob's future visit(s) will be at 4,500+ ft using a drone.
--
"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God!" -- P.Henry, 1775


StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2

said by Blackbird:

...Bob's future visit(s) will be at 4,500+ ft using a drone.

That better be 4,500ft AGL cause I'm at 7,800ft.

I had one PC on (WPA2) wi-fi at the time of the visit. Not sure much data could be gained by sniffing that (MAC addresses?). Prolly sniffed my cell phone too.

I'm sure Bob had to drive a long way to get here. Hope it was worth it.
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!


KodiacZiller
Premium
join:2008-09-04
73368
kudos:2
reply to MagnusM

So if you really want that extra piece of mind, don't just wipe the data... destroy the drives the Google way!

I would bet those drives are drives that were failing in some way. So before throwing them away, Google put a hole through them. This makes sense in that scenario.

But if the drive is still fully operational, there is no need to destroy it if you want to make the data unreadable. A simple overwrite will make the data unrecoverable (and I don't mean to start that debate again, but whoever says otherwise is simply wrong).
--
Getting people to stop using windows is more or less the same as trying to get people to stop smoking tobacco products. They dont want to change; they are happy with slowly dying inside. -- munky99999


Name Game
Premium
join:2002-07-07
Grand Rapids, MI
kudos:7
reply to StuartMW

Stop giving him free parking.


Name Game
Premium
join:2002-07-07
Grand Rapids, MI
kudos:7
reply to MagnusM

Storm Tropper

»maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&ll=35···184&z=17



StuartMW
Who Is John Galt?
Premium
join:2000-08-06
Galt's Gulch
kudos:2
reply to MagnusM

said by MagnusM:

How do you destroy the data on old drives?

If the drive is good I do a write-zeroes to all sectors and reuse it (have a number of external drives for backup etc).

If the drive is bad it gets the hammer treatment.
--
Don't feed trolls--it only makes them grow!

peterboro
Avatars are for posers
Premium
join:2006-11-03
Peterborough, ON

1 recommendation

reply to Dustyn

said by Dustyn:

Fire. And lot's of it.

I was going to post I use my cutting torch to melt them and you beat me to it. The fact I am computer illiterate and don't know how to wipe a hard drive other than with a damp cloth may have something to do with it. That or I'm a pyromaniac.

equivocal

join:2008-01-23
USA
reply to MagnusM

Kinda hard to tell whether the drives are missing their platters or just have the motors punched out. Maybe they used one of those things used to kill cattle. I, on the other hand, bought a set of tiny screwdrivers from harborfreight and surgically removed the platters. Oh, what to do with mirror-finish holey discs? In any event, separating the circuit board from the rest seems like a better e-waste practice.



ashrc4
Premium
join:2009-02-06
australia
reply to MagnusM

said by MagnusM:

So if you really want that extra piece of mind, don't just wipe the data... destroy the drives the Google way!

You mean simply replace the "old drives" data to a new one, after it's already been shared with numerous third parties, then, create the illusion of safely discarding the drive with the impression that the data (yours and mine) is all that much safer.

The latest missive came on Tuesday in Europe, where regulators told Google to revise a 7-month-old change to its privacy policy that enables the company to combine user data collected from its different services.

Even as it allows anyone with a web browser to peer into its data centres, Google intends to closely guard physical access to its buildings.

»www.theage.com.au/it-pro/busines···sa7.html

said by MagnusM:

How do you destroy the data on old drives?

Just encrypt the data first then remove the great fridge magnets inside.
--
Paradigm Shift beta test pilot. "Dying to defend one's small piece of suburb...Give me something global...STAT!


exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3

1 recommendation

reply to MagnusM

I take em to the shooting range. A few bullets through the platters at 25, 50, and 100 yards destroys data and helps with keeping proficient.



cableties
Premium
join:2005-01-27
reply to MagnusM

I use a Garner which from the picture, looks like Google also does.

But first the degaussing:
»www.garner-products.com/HD-3WXL.htm
then the finishing crush:
»www.garner-products.com/PD-4.htm

This is best method. Then all the parts go to recycling.

I do have some regrets as there are recovery services that pay top dollar for intact controller boards and heads. You see, if you lose a hard drive in your server or computer, a recover facility might have a matching (in series, firmware and size) board to allow recovery. Kinda sad that I have to destroy perfectly good drives...

Yes, the magnets in these (I was taking apart hundreds till I blew through T5, T6 bits) are powerful fridge magnets...

BTW, those 2.5" Hitachi/IBM notebook drives have glass platters... doesn't take much to lose your data!
--
Splat



AVD
Respice, Adspice, Prospice
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Onion, NJ
kudos:1
reply to MagnusM

said by MagnusM:

So this picture is from a Google data center:

[att=1]

What you see here are 2.0 TB Western Digital Black drives... with a big hole in the middle where the hard drive platters used to be. So if you really want that extra piece of mind, don't just wipe the data... destroy the drives the Google way!

The full set of images from the data center is available at »imgur.com/a/xQPKq - really fascinating to look at.

How do you destroy the data on old drives?

what a waste.
--
--Standard disclaimers apply.--


MagnusM
Premium
join:2001-07-07
reply to exocet_cm

said by exocet_cm:

I take em to the shooting range. A few bullets through the platters at 25, 50, and 100 yards destroys data and helps with keeping proficient.

I wish I could do that. Unfortunately guns are (very) illegal here.
--
Mischel Internet Security - Developer of TrojanHunter


Mike
Premium,Mod
join:2000-09-17
Pittsburgh, PA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Verizon FiOS
reply to MagnusM

Someone I knew who used to work for IBM in the 80s said that he supports our second amendment because it's the only good way to destroy hard drives and to guarantee data destruction.
--
"If something about the human body disgusts you, complain to the manufacturer" - Lenny Bruce
What this country needs is a good five dollar plasma weapon.



exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3
reply to MagnusM

said by MagnusM:

said by exocet_cm:

I take em to the shooting range. A few bullets through the platters at 25, 50, and 100 yards destroys data and helps with keeping proficient.

I wish I could do that. Unfortunately guns are (very) illegal here.

Aww, that sucks.

The coolest was running a PSU from an inverter via extension cord, powering up the HDDs with the cover removed, spinning up the platter to 7,200 RPM, and shooting them with 5.56. Those rounds hit the platter causing it to shatter while spinning and the things sparkled as the pieces fell to the ground. Wish we had a video of it. That was fun!
--
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons..." - T.S Eliot
"I have often regretted my speech, never my silence." - Publilius Syrus
Ma blog: »www.johndball.com