DVD/CD Shredder

Reviewed by: Jeff Matthews, updated March 2007
Made by: Alera Technologies
Requires: A little desk space, DVDs and CDs for disposal
MSRP: $49.99 (basic model), $129.00 (Plus model)

Do you have important information that you would like to keep away from prying eyes? Businesses that plan to toss out some of their CD volumes that contain corporate data should consider using the DVD/CD Shredder as an inexpensive pre-disposal solution. One never knows who might find your discarded CDs and DVDs and try to load them to see what they contain. Alera Technologies offers a variety of powerful security solutions at relatively cheap prices. The DVD/CD shredder is a no-brainer to use and requires no technical knowledge of any kind. The DVD/CD shredder comes complete with a registration card and manual and is ready for use right out of the box. All you do is plug the machine in, switch it to Auto and you're all set to start protecting your private information.

As of this March 2007 review update, the Alera DVD/CD shredder is available in four different models to accommodate a wide range of duty cycles. The top of the line model does full cross-cutting and also handles paper, credit cards and other items.


As an initial test, I started with a CD filled with freeware. I inserted the CD into the receiver slot on the machine and it automatically pulled the CD inside. After the CD was ejected I could see ridges throughout the disc's top and bottom layers which made it completely unreadable and safe from prying eyes. In order to test the manufacturer's promise, I inserted the CD into a computer drive and tried to read the data. The computer gave me a hour glass, but then was unable to load the CD.


There's not much more to a shredder than that. CD, DVD, Blu-Ray and HD-DVD discs are so completely ruined even by the basic Alera DVD/CD Shredder that recovery is simply impossible under most conceivable circumstances! The Alera DVD/CD Shredder is essentially a desktop device done up in various textures of basic black plastic with a couple of control buttons on its top panel. It has a front slot which is to small for finger and other valuable items which are better off unshredded.

Cons: The basic model is a bit noisy. It gives off a grinding noise making you feel that you're in a wood workshop. This machine is not the solution for a quiet office environment unless you're isolated in private office. In order for the device to shred 20-30 CDs in quick succession, the person working the device must always be on hand feeding the discs into the machine.

Pros: The DVD/CD shredder is small and compact and weighs about 8 lbs (3.6 kilos). You can easily make room for it on your desktop. A DVD and CD shredder for only $69.00 is well worth the money because other methods (e.g.: professional data shredding services) are either more expensive or (when snapping CDs or DVDs in half by hand) downright dangerous. Businesses often store customer, personnel, confidential and manufacturing data on large volumes of CDs. The DVD/CD shredder comes into play offering a powerful security solution when the time comes to destroy data and backups which are no longer needed. The DVD/CD shredder is able to destroy data at a very fast rate - up to 30 DVD/CDs a minute.

(Ed. Note: We think there's plenty of room in the typical IS/IT toolkit for a DVD/CD Shredder setup. Ditto for other data sensitive environments. Tossing CDs and DVDs into any handy trash can is a time-honored tradition that should probably be brought to an immediate halt. Information is money.)





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