Computer recycling: assess the risk

How con­fid­ent are you that your dis­carded end-of-life IT assets aren’t going to come back to haunt you?

[show_avatar align=left avatar_size=80]Consider this:

Com­puters, con­tain­ing hun­dreds of cus­tomer files includ­ing account num­bers and bal­ances, are often lis­ted for sale on eBay after chan­ging hands through the years. Who can for­get the former Mor­gan Stan­ley vice pres­id­ent that sold his old Black­Berry on eBay for $15; it still had a trove of con­fid­en­tial internal e-mails and a com­pany directory.

As these widely repor­ted hor­ror stor­ies demon­strate, improper dis­posal of old equip­ment poses huge secur­ity risks.

And data secur­ity isn’t the only worry. Envir­on­mental con­cerns about wide­spread dump­ing of poten­tially toxic, used IT equip­ment is cre­at­ing major poten­tial legal and pub­li­city haz­ards for enter­prises look­ing to dis­pose of e-waste (elec­tronic waste). E-waste can have con­cen­tra­tions of lead, cad­mium, mer­cury, and other harm­ful chemicals.

In short, the dis­posal of end-of-life assets has become a tick­ing time bomb for many enter­prises. “There’s a tsunami of used, obsol­ete PCs that is going to hit the mar­ket­place, a huge back­log of assets that has not been dealt with,” explains Kathy Fer­guson, busi­ness unit exec­ut­ive at IBM Global Asset Recov­ery Ser­vices. She says that many enter­prises are deal­ing with the prob­lem by “shov­ing product into the closets and the hallways.”

About 2 bil­lion units of com­puter equip­ment will become poten­tial scrap between now and 2015. And enter­prises can no longer count on selling off their used assets at a profit, because the pace of innov­a­tion has cut the resale value of used com­puter equip­ment in half.

What’s a com­pany with end-of-life assets to do? If you plan ahead, you can min­im­ize your data secur­ity risks, your envir­on­mental liab­il­it­ies, and your costs.

When choos­ing a dis­posal method for your equip­ment, and con­sid­er­ing the data secur­ity and envir­on­mental aspects of dis­posal, it all comes back to risk, you have to look at how much risk you want to assume.

Inter­rec can sup­ply a zero cost:
100% secure destruc­tion of data
we pay for IT WEEE
– nation­wide col­lec­tion ser­vice
fully com­pli­ant treat­ment facility

Help to sup­port our mis­sion to put people back to work — con­tact Inter­rec now for secure dis­posal of yout IT assets

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Technical Director at Interrec B.V Ireland, providing zero cost computer recycling & data destruction services in Ireland & the UK. Contact me for a no-obligation quote for your ICT equipment.

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Posted in Computer Recycling, Data Destruction

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