Electronic devices or hard drives temporarily leaving the University for repair must have their data encrypted or removed AND must be shipped with tracking (e.g., via UPS or FedEx ground).
If the storage component of the device is functioning, all data should be either 1) encrypted using a 256-bit or larger key, or 2) removed by software that replaces previously stored data on a drive or disk with a predetermined pattern of meaningless information; a disk “initialization” is insufficient. Examples of such software are listed on the Data Removal Software section below.
If the storage component of the device is non-functioning, it must be either 1) removed and processed as described under items 1. or 4., or 2) degaussed (concept as explained by Wikipedia).
Note: Degaussing may or may not violate a particular warranty. A degausser is available for loan from ITS’s Departmental Computing Support group.
Note: This requirement may interfere with warranty replacement of dead hard drives. Vendors usually require the return of a dead hard drive, but such a drive cannot be accessed to remove or encrypt data. Departments are encouraged to negotiate “no return required” clauses on hard-drive warranties (see, for example, Dell's offering). Otherwise, departments may have to replace dead drives at cost outside of warranty coverage.
If the purpose of the repair is to recover lost data from the device, you must use a UVa Procurement purchase order (PO), not a purchasing card or other means of payment. A PO includes UVa's Purchasing Terms and Conditions (T&Cs), to which the vendor must agree. These T&Cs stipulate that data are covered by the University's Data Protection Addendum and Business Associate Addendum (covering potential HIPAA or PHI data).
In addition, the device must be shipped with tracking (e.g., via UPS or FedEx ground). There are data recovery vendors who are willing to operate under the above conditions. Please email email@example.com for information on vendors currently known to accept this process and/or with any questions about how to proceed.