STAFFORD, England, July 29, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- From 1st August, Stone, the UK's largest privately-owned computer hardware manufacturer (, will only provide its public sector customers with PCs and laptops that include the famous Mission: Impossible option to self-destruct the data on the system prior to disposal. Through a collaboration with the global leader in data erasure and end-of-lifecycle solutions, Blancco (, Stone will pre-install data erasure capabilities as standard across its hardware portfolio, in an exclusive deal. This groundbreaking move will empower suitably-authorised individuals to perform their own CESG-approved ( data erasures at the point equipment is decommissioned, thereby eliminating all downstream data security risks.

Through the collaboration, Stone is launching pre-installed data erasure capabilities across its entire hardware portfolio, including its own desktops and laptops, as well as branded products such as Samsung, which it expects to total in excess of 100,000 units by the end of 2010. These products will include - at no extra cost - a pre-configured executable programme which will allow the customer to perform a data erasure process in-house, without the presence of an engineer or the need to remove hardware to an off-site facility.

James Bird, CEO at Stone, explains, It sounds like that great opening sequence in Mission: Impossible when the data self-destructs after 30 seconds! It is, of course, very carefully controlled and managed and there isn't the excitement of flames and smoke, just a simple electronic signal! But with the penalty for data protection breaches now reaching up to GBP500,000 for organisations which do not properly manage the deletion of their records, this free facility supplied by computer hardware manufacturer Stone through its collaboration with market leader Blancco may well save Councils, Schools and Government departments from both red faces and penalties!

He continues, We all know how dramatic the effects can be from losing sensitive data, which is just as much of a danger in hardware recycling processes as during day-to-day business activities. Our UK public sector ( customers will now have total control over the data erasure process, rather than entrusting a third party to undertake the task. And the execution of this could not be simpler, with customer simply contacting us to source their unique password in order to activate the data erasure software ( process. Importantly, they will of course be required to undergo strict security screening so that no unauthorised data erasure takes place. Further precautions include each piece of software having only one activation code, ensuring accidental erasure can also be avoided.

Bird continues, We have taken the decision to include this in all of our UK public sector business, as customers may hold sensitive data on the public and therefore be liable to such fines for improper use. The Blancco data erasure software makes it simple and comprehensive to erase this information as part of an effective data protection strategy, and guarantees that information stored on hardware has been erased prior to redeployment or end-of-lifecycle disposal.

Blancco is already the proven data erasure software solution for millions of users around the globe. As the global leader in data erasure and end-of-lifecycle solutions, Blancco offers the most certified data erasure solutions within the industry, serving users across a wide range of industries including banking, finance, government and defence, as well as IT asset disposal professionals.

This new offering follows the recent Data Protection Act fines overhaul, which became active in April this year. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) is now able to make organisations pay up to GBP500,000 as a penalty for serious data breaches, in a move to protect citizens' data in an increasingly online society.

Bird concludes, In order to comply with this legislation, an organisation must protect itself from the multitude of data breach risks posed by current and former employees, and third parties such as unaccredited hardware recyclers and hackers. Failure to recognise these risks could cause significant damage to the organisation's reputation, customer trust and bottom line. Against this backdrop, computer hardware manufacturer Stone aims to offer its customers an effective way to manage these risks.

Notes to editors

About Stone (

Stone is the UK's largest privately-owned computer hardware manufacturer and is wholly dedicated to the UK public sector, specialising in the supply and support of ICT and audio-visual solutions to schools, colleges, universities, local government, the emergency services, the NHS and the MoD.

Stone's directors and employees are UK based, paying UK taxes and the company pays UK corporation tax. That means that the company and its employees are all reinvesting as taxpayers back into UK PLC, unlike some competitors that are based abroad and contribute to other economies. Stone has recently invested in 100,000 sq.ft. of new manufacturing production line and office facilities in the West Midlands because it firmly believes in UK-based manufacturing.

Having acquired Rock in May 2008, Stone now sells direct to consumers, and offers high-end business and gaming notebooks to all sectors.

As well as achieving supplier status on all major educational and public sector frameworks, Stone has well-established relationships with leading manufacturers. Strong partnerships with Intel, Microsoft, LG, Seagate and Samsung ensure that all of its customers can be confident in the quality of the technology and receive the most competitive pricing structure.

For more information please contact: Dionne Barlow Tegan Boaler The Stone Group The itpr Group Tel: +44(0)8448-221-122 Tel: +44(0)-1932-578-800


CONTACT: For more information please contact: Dionne Barlow, The StoneGroup, Tel: +44(0)8448-221-122; Tegan Boaler, The itpr Group, Tel:+44(0)-1932-578-800