Need help from a computer geek: how can I return broken Hard Drive without risk of ID theft?

I bought an external hard drive to backup my computers. But after only three weeks, it won't power up. There is a 30 day return / exchange policy. But what about all my data on the drive? I don't want to hand that over to some kid in the store. If I physically damage the drive it will void the warranty. What can I do??


It has an external power source, but the light does not come on when this is plugged in. It connects to the computer with a USB cable. Computer can't see it. Not seeing any way to get it apart, but a good suggestion.

6 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    When you say it will not power up is it that the power will not come on or the drive will not show up? If it is just the power to the case you could open the case (if you can do this without voiding the warranty) and can take the hard drive out and then use it as a slave drive in your computer and then you would be able to remove any of the data this way. and then but it back in the case.

  • 1 decade ago

    Make sure the outlet that the hdd is plugged in to is working by testing with another electrical appliance. If it is plugged in to a surge protector make sure it didn't trip and cut the power. Try another plug in on the surge protector. See if you can just send in the power supply for exchange. Or just order a new one of the same model swap out the power supply and return the new hdd for a refund along with the junk power supply.

  • 4 years ago

    First of all, destroying the hard drives doesn't mean you have to destroy the entire computer. I think you are confusing the word "hard drive" for that big box you plug your monitor and mouse into. That's not the hard drive, that's the computer. The hard drive is a device inside the computer which stores data. You can destroy it without destroying the rest of the machine. That being said, yes, you can erase all the information off of it without actually destroying it if you want to. There is plenty of tools available for free on the internet, just go to Yahoo and type in "free hard drive erasing software". You can also physically destroy the drive. Remove it from the computer, and destroy it as you see fit (personally I like blowing them up, but thats just me) Just however you decide to destroy it, make sure the metal platters inside are destroyed, or at least de-magnetized.

  • 1 decade ago

    Since it will not power up, nothing with out damage. If the peace of mind is that important. Eat the cost, and get another one. Next time be care full with what you store on one. Better yet get a encryption program and use it, then with out your code, the data is all garbage.

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  • 1 decade ago

    You could use a bulk hard disk eraser like this:

    Or a large radar magnet would also probably do the trick.

    Either case would be pretty expensive. I would just send it back to the manufacturer, and forgo dealing with the store.

  • 1 decade ago

    Are you worried someone will see your porn ?

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