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With the price of powerful computer systems at historic lows, who isn’t tempted to upgrade? But what do you do with a system you’ve been using if it’s less than four or five years old and still has some life left in it? Pass it on to a friend or family member or donate it to a school or civic organization and you’re ethically obliged to safeguard client data on the hard drive. Plus, you’ll want to protect your personal data from identity thieves and snoopers. Hopefully you already know that deleting confidential files and even formatting the drive does little to erase your private information — it’s like tearing out the table of contents but leaving the rest of the book. How do you be a Good Samaritan without jeopardizing client confidences and personal privacy?

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