One of the system administrators of a healthcare organisation recently contacted us.
They were decommissioning around 18 of their Dell laptops. For data security purposes, he removed all the Crucial MX500 S-ATA SSDs from the systems and attempted to use Crucial Storage Executive software (hosted on a desktop PC) to perform a SecureErase function on them. The only problem was SecureErase was not executing on any of them. This left him with in a bit of a pickle because even just formatting the SSDs using Windows Disk Management is not considered secure. This is because, there is a high probability that a “Windows format” is going to miss areas on the NAND flash of the SSD like the user space area, the overprovisioned space, the spare blocks and bad block locations. SecureErase is designed get into all of these nooks and crannies.
He was beginning to think the problem was related to the TPM chips inside the Dell laptops and was not relishing the prospect of re-inserting all the SSDs. As a previous customer of Drive Rescue, he contacted us – did we have any suggestions?
Get the Sequence Right…
We did actually! This is a known problem with the Crucial Storage Executive software. Sometimes, the “PSID revert” utility has to be run before “Sanitize”. PSID revert involves reading the label of the disk and inputting the PSID code, as written on Crucial MX500 series SSDs, into the CSE software. Without following this sequence, the Sanitize (SecureErase) function will not work. This is just a quirk of the SSD management software.
This morning we got a nice Starbucks gift card in the post from the kindly systems admin who was very relieved to have found a quick and secure solution to this problem.