View Full Version : Best Buy Pawns Hard Drive??

06-05-2006, 05:18 PM
Beware of Best Buy...If this had been me, I would have demanded my hard drive back.

Couple's Supposedly Destroyed Hard Drive Purchased In Chicago <!-- END HEADLINE -->
<!-- BEGIN STORY BODY -->Thu Jun 1, 9:48 AM ET

A year ago, Henry and Roma Gerbus took their computer to Best Buy in Springfield Township to have its hard drive replaced.

Henry Gerbus said Best Buy assured him the computer's old hard drive -- loaded with personal information -- would be destroyed.

"They said rest assured. They drill holes in it so it's useless," said Gerbus.

A few months ago, Gerbus got a phone call from a man in Chicago.

"He said, 'My name is Ed. I just bought your hard drive for $25 at a flea market in Chicago,'" said Gerbus. "I thought my world was coming down."

Gerbus and his wife had good reason to worry.

A total stranger had access to the couple's personal information, including Social Security numbers, bank statements and investment records.

Through information listed on the hard drive, the man in Chicago was able to contact the couple.

"He said, 'Do you want me to wipe it clean or send it to you?' I told him to send it to me. I wanted it in my hands," said Gerbus.

Gerbus received the hard drive a few weeks later.

As a precaution, the couple alerted the major credit bureaus to protect their information.
"I'm not leaving myself open to identity theft," said Gerbus.

Target 5's Tom Sussi contacted Best Buy to figure out how the Gerbus' hard drive wound up at a flea market outside Chicago.

Best Buy issued the following statement to Target 5.
"Our company values and places the utmost importance on maintaining the privacy of our customers. We will fully investigate these allegations."

In the meantime, Gerbus said he hopes the couple's private information didn't fall into the wrong hands. "I don?t know if we're going to have a problem," said Gerbus. "I just don't know."



06-05-2006, 07:37 PM
I wouldn't trust a Best Buy tech any further than I could throw him/her.

06-07-2006, 06:57 AM
I looked into this issue more deeply and found that it is against FCC policy to improperly discard a hard drive by any retail company, limited partnership or licensed individual specializing in computer retail and repair. The hard drive must be wiped and either a) returned to the manufacturer or b) destroyed in a way that the device can no longer function mechanically.

Chances are, the employee stole the hard drive from Best Buy and pawned it. Either way, it is Best Buy's responsibility to monitor its employees in these cases.

06-07-2006, 01:46 PM
I agree with okcpulse.... No retail company would do such a thing. It would destroy thier relationship with their customers once it became public.

Chances our an employee stole the hard drive from the store. It could be possible that they just throw the hard drives out with the rest of the trash and someone found it in a dumpster or landfill.

As okcpulse said Best Buy and other retailers will need to take accountabilty and take measures to keep this happening again.