Best practical way to destroy an SD card

Discussion in 'privacy problems' started by Jran, Dec 16, 2011.

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  1. Jran

    Jran Registered Member

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    Hi

    some time ago there was a piece of news circulating on the internet, about a suspected criminal who swallowed a Kingston flashdrive in order to eliminate incriminating evidence. We all must have thought, how dumb! Yes, but what would you have done in his place? Please note that this question applies also to cases where the information you want to destroy is not illegal or immoral per se; in fact, this is a fairly common problem faced in repressive regimes around the world.

    So, the question now is, assuming that an SD card is physically much more vulnerable than an encased flashdrive, what is the best way to destroy data on an SD card, at a short notice and without specialized equipment?
    Chemicals (which ones?), burning, microwaving...?
    Have you got experience with any of these? (please, don't just say "I saw that in a movie"...)

    The more practical and down-to-earth the proposed solution is, the better.

    Cheers
     
  2. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    Good old stomp and throw down the disposal unit after secure data shredding.
     
  3. Hungry Man

    Hungry Man Registered Member

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    Pretty much anything. Snapping it in two or heating it up will do fine. Depends who you need to hide it from.

    If I had some world-destroying data and the government was 10 minutes away I'd probably do my best to melt it down.
     
  4. guest

    guest Guest

    BURN IT th_fire-2.gif
     
  5. chiraldude

    chiraldude Registered Member

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    Burning is good but not very practical. If you have an electric stove you could could put it on the spiral heating element on top and turn to high.

    The garbage disposal seems a better way to go. It will end up chopped into little pieces that will mostly go down the drain.

    The microwave is a very good option. Electronic circuits absorb microwaves and tiny wire traces on circuit boards get vaporized. I would expect the drive to be dead after 3-5 seconds. Within 30 seconds I would expect it would catch fire. Never put a flash drive in a microwave but I have put other electronics in a microwave for fun:D
     
  6. HAN

    HAN Registered Member

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    Put it in a plastic bag and smash it to smithereens with a hammer. Destroyed and self contained! :D
     
  7. noblelord

    noblelord Registered Member

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    I echo the microwave solution. I would then remove the debris from the microwave and, providing there was time, scatter the remains in various places, one of which would probably be the Thames which flows out into the sea!
     
  8. chiraldude

    chiraldude Registered Member

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    Of course any security solution should first be analysed in context of the threat you are protecting agents.
    In the case of the guy swallowing the flash drive, I don't know of any way around it. Assuming this is the story you were thinking about:
    http://news.cnet.com/8301-17852_3-10462687-71.html
    The guy was charged with obstruction of justice and apparently the drive was recovered. (not sure if it was in working condition)
    If the police are in the room with you and demand the flash drive, how do you destroy it without them knowing you destroyed it? I don't know of any flash drives with a secret self destruct button.

    Use encryption and say you forgot the password. Use hidden encryption such as found in Truecrypt for extra protection.
     
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