Kaspersky reveals the most sophisticated malware ever discovered, distributed by someone with the power to intercept hardware and software deliveries and install malware on physical media and devices before they reach the customer. The software infects the firmware of hard drives and other low-level components and encrypts itself uniquely for each machine, making it extremely hard to detect. In retrospect the malware seems to have been around for at least 14 years, only now coming to light and still only partially understood.
The malicious firmware created a secret storage vault that survived military-grade disk wiping and reformatting, making sensitive data stolen from victims available even after reformatting the drive and reinstalling the operating system.
I will likely never, ever recycle any hard drive again. Or any digital device for that matter.