It’s easy for companies to treat old technology like any other kind of trash. Yet, the projected $18.7 billion global market for IT asset disposal suggests it’s not like any other kind of trash.
While shredding can effectively destroy paper copies of records and client information, tech proves a tougher nut to crack. Data persists on hard drives even after you “delete” it.
This is where IT asset disposal comes into the picture. So, what exactly is it and why does it matter for your business.
What is IT Asset Disposal?
In a nutshell, tech asset disposal for your business computers, servers, and mobile devices involves a multi-step process.
The asset disposal service must start with a digital scrubbing of the devices. This means using specialized software that completely wipes out any residual files or file components on the devices.
In some cases, a disposal service will also remove active software products so you can reuse them.
The disposal service then proceeds with the physical destruction of hard drives through shredding with machines built for the purpose. The remaining components must then go through a tech recycling process.
Why It Matters
The primary reason why proper asset disposal matters for your business is pure security. Old tech can contain a wide range of data that can compromise your business, such as:
- network passwords
- client payment information
- banking/credit card information
- company trade secrets
Exposure of any of that data could leave your network at risk, damage your company’s financial health, or create potential legal actions. It could also damage your reputation with current and future clients if client information gets exposed.
Benefits of Proper Disposal
Only around 20% of electronic waste gets proper disposal worldwide. Using a disposal service lets you reduce your environmental impact from electronic waste. This lets you use the disposal as part of any corporate responsibility campaign your company conducts.
Some businesses, such as medical practices or financial firms, operate under extra regulatory requirements. Using a disposal firm often lets you meet the regulatory obligations for protecting patient or client health/identifying information.
In some cases, you can end the disposal process at the data scrubbing step and resell the equipment. This lets you recoup some money and helps finance new tech purchases.
Parting Thoughts on IT Asset Disposal
IT asset disposal isn’t something you can treat as an afterthought. Your old technology often contains sensitive company or client information.
Letting that information get out can damage your IT security, finances, and even company secrets. It can damage clients’ financial security. That can leave you in a position to get sued by your clients.
In some cases, letting a data breach puts you in violation of state or federal regulations. That leaves you open for legal action by the government.
Proper asset disposal helps protect you from these negative outcomes.