Taking Bytes Out of Info

WASHINGTON (08/14/2000) - It's not just a fancy paper shredder. It's a "disintegrator" designed to destroy paper and a variety of high-tech media.

The Model 200 Disintegrator, from Security Engineered Machinery, uses four knives and a solid steel rotor spin-ning at 500 rpm to destroy paper with ease, as well as CD-ROMs, floppy disks, microfilm, audiocassettes, identification badges and credit cards.

All materials pulverized by the knives are cut into small, irregularly shaped particles no larger than 3/32 or 3/8 of an inch, meeting or exceeding U.S.

Department of Defense requirements for paper document destruction at the highest security levels, said Peter Dempsey, president of the Westboro, Mass.-based company.

"The need for an office-sized disintegrator grew out of the advancing [information technology]" in government agencies, Dempsey said. "This is a viable means of getting rid of both software and hardware."

The Model 200 is capable of processing up to 100 pounds of material an hour, comes with a soundproof hopper and plugs into any standard wall outlet. It weighs about 400 pounds and is slightly more than three feet tall.

The Model 200 Disintegrator is the smallest machine SEM makes and is used throughout the Department of Energy, DOD and the FBI, Dempsey said. The product is available on the General Services Administration schedule for US$6,232.

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