Why I wouldn’t swap hard drives on a laptop.

Dax0007 wrote in response to my point 14. Secure format/wipe hard disk, and replace with original disk.  Repeat process. (21 Things to do when quitting work)

“When taking over a company laptop I think its a god idea just go out and buy another HD, HD kit for the laptop, & some restore cd’s for that laptop.. then setup your new harddrisk for personal use and when u do company work use ur company harddrisk.. you should be 100% safe to surf, download, and do what u want.. right????”

Maybe Dax0007.  But swapping hard disk drives on a Lenovo Thinkpad is going to get awful tiring fairly quickly.  The following three drawings from IBM illustrate how much of a process it is:
t43hdd1t43hdd2t43hdd3

(used to take me 10 minutes to swap the disks on a T41 Thinkpad)

If I still had a company laptop, I would

  • set a drive password on the hard drive
  • encrypt the hard disk drive with TrueCrypt.
  • also TrueCrypt encrypt any “backup” drives I used at/for work.

And I’d also remind myself that anything I do while connected to the corporate network, is definitely not “safe” from scrutiny.