We use degaussing machine to erase or destroy the magnetic data stored on magnetic storage media such as hard disk drives, magnetic tapes, and floppy disks. The process of degaussing involves the use of a strong magnetic field to disrupt or randomize the magnetic domains on the media, effectively erasing any previously stored data.
Here’s how a degaussing machine works:
- Magnetic Field Generation: The degaussing machine contains a large and powerful electromagnet or coil. When the machine is turned on, an electric current is passed through this coil, creating a strong and fluctuating magnetic field.
- Magnetic Data Disruption: When a magnetic storage medium, such as a hard disk drive or magnetic tape, is placed near the degaussing machine, the fluctuating magnetic field penetrates the magnetic material of the media.
- Data Erasure: The intense magnetic field causes the magnetic particles within the storage media to lose their original orientation and become randomly aligned. This process effectively erases the data stored on the medium since it destroys the previously stored magnetic patterns.
- Complete Erasure: Degaussing ensures a more complete data erasure compared to simply deleting or formatting the data using standard software methods. It affects all data on the medium simultaneously, leaving no trace of the previous information.
It’s important to note that degaussing is irreversible, and once data is erased from a magnetic storage medium, it cannot be recovered using normal means. As a result, degaussing machines are commonly used when it’s essential to ensure the complete destruction of sensitive or confidential data, or for decommissioning old storage media before disposal.