Dell extortion

I bought a Dell desktop five weeks ago and it crashed already (before the external hard drive that I had just purchased online a few days before arrived). The tech guy came out and replaced both the motherboard and the hard drive. I tried to access my old files using an enclosure, but no luck...the device can not detect the hard drive. Seems that my files are either gone or too expensive to recover. In any event, my complaint now is that Dell demands that I return the defective hard drive to them or pay $150. I'm concerned that with their better equipment they might be able get to my files (sensitive data like tax forms, etc) if they wanted to. This seems like extortion: either I pay them a lot of money or put my data at risk. What do others think? Any suggestions for how I could wipe the drive clean without doing physical damage to it? I will never buy anything from Dell ever again. Any help would be appreciated.
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  1. Were I with the CIA, I might worry about someone recovering data from one of my failed drives...

    Dell is simply trying to recover property they replaced under warranty, it is not intended as an evil plot to read your tax data....or porn.

    If you are sure the drive cannot even be detected in the BIOS or read, the odds of someone removing/transferring the platters to get to your data are ....well...very slim indeed...
  2. next time use full disc encryption end of story
  3. You get your warranty from seagate through dell. So dell have to take your failed HDD back to seagate to prove that seagate drives fail, to claim a new drive from seagate. If you don't return it, dell cannot claim HDD from seagate, thus the warranty is invalid. They only way dell can get a new drive is if they "sell" you a HDD thus cost you $150.

    This is how computer component exchange warranty works. You always have to return the defective product to claim your warranty, through a retailer, oem or direct.
  4. Dell isn't in the business of scanning returned dead drives for data. They get thousands of returned parts daily. The only reason they want the part back is so they can claim a credit from the manufacturer. The drives are either destroyed on site or sent back to the manufacturer to be refurbished. Either way, your data is gone. They charge the fee to make sure people aren't keeping good parts, and to prevent them from losing the ability to claim manufacturer credit. Dell isn't in the data recovery business.
  5. this is normal your complaining about nothing you have to remember:

    you have purchased a unit with ONE hdd, there not just going to give you another one free/for nothing

    your data and backup/protection of your data is YOUR problem, if you loose your data or corrupt it etc its YOUR problem, you assume liability and any costs for data recovery which usually voids warranty's

    hdd's can fail at any time anywhere for any reason, you shouldnt trust them with anything important

    if the data is that sensitive then perhaps get them to NOT replace the hdd and purchase a new hdd and destroy the old one yourself and live with the costs

    either way, dell is in the right here, there doing there job
  6. soccer12 said:
    I bought a Dell desktop five weeks ago and it crashed already (before the external hard drive that I had just purchased online a few days before arrived). The tech guy came out and replaced both the motherboard and the hard drive. I tried to access my old files using an enclosure, but no luck...the device can not detect the hard drive. Seems that my files are either gone or too expensive to recover. In any event, my complaint now is that Dell demands that I return the defective hard drive to them or pay $150. I'm concerned that with their better equipment they might be able get to my files (sensitive data like tax forms, etc) if they wanted to. This seems like extortion: either I pay them a lot of money or put my data at risk. What do others think? Any suggestions for how I could wipe the drive clean without doing physical damage to it? I will never buy anything from Dell ever again. Any help would be appreciated.


    actually at one time I tried to physically transfer the platter manually to other drive, didnt work out that well :kaola:
  7. dontknownotsure said:
    next time use full disc encryption end of story



    Thanks. How do I encrypt a hard drive? I actually don't know much about computers....
  8. dontknownotsure said:
    next time use full disc encryption end of story



    Thanks. How do I encrypt a hard drive? I actually don't know much about computers....
  9. soccer12 said:
    Thanks. How do I encrypt a hard drive? I actually don't know much about computers....

    Try truecrypt, its perhaps the most comprehensive and user friendly out there also, its a freeware.
  10. If you have a local computer repair shop nearby, you could see what they would charge to try to recover your drive's contents, if you need what's on there. They may have tools you don't.
  11. sonoran said:
    If you have a local computer repair shop nearby, you could see what they would charge to try to recover your drive's contents, if you need what's on there. They may have tools you don't.


    good luck finding local repair shop with clean room and a lab lol.
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