First, ask yourself: is my old personal computer useful to anyone? If not, just destroy the hard drive; e.g. put a few drill holes in it or remove it and smash it with a hammer, done. Then recycle the remains per your local waste disposal process.
If it is a worthy hand-me-down, transfer all important personal files to your new personal computer. This can be done conveniently by professionals at the store where you are purchasing your new personal computer or by a contracted professional.
Alternatively, if you have experience with migration, you can use the software that comes with your new personal computer – both Windows and macOS offer this. Another option, if you have a complete backup elsewhere, e.g. Carbonite or another cloud service, is to use it to restore the contents on the new personal computer.
Now, erase ALL contents on your old personal computer’s hard disk. It’s not as easy as it may sound – you may ask, why not just do a “delete all?” It turns out that you actually need to overwrite the contents of the hard disk completely to ensure that all prior data is obscured. There are several free tools available to do this, such as DBAN (https://dban.org/). This is important to prevent a scammer from stealing any remaining personal information on your old personal computer.
FOR FURTHER READING:
CyberGuardian: a SecureTheVillage Guide for Residents is available on Amazon.
A complete Security Checklist is available: https://www.nerdsiview.com/security-checklist-2/
References for Village Residents are available at SECURE THE VILLAGE: https://securethevillage.org/residents
© Alan Steven Krantz 2021