Why IT Asset Disposition is Essential for Liability Reduction
We both know how important it is to keep your business information private and secure. That’s why proper IT asset disposal is vital for the effective risk management of your company.
When most of your data is physically located on company devices, it can be difficult to mitigate the risk associated with the disposal of the electronics. You need to thoroughly destroy or overwrite your business information before you consider recycling, selling, or donating your devices.
In this article, you will discover the importance of IT asset disposition and data destruction, and how both of those are essential for reducing your company’s liability. So, let’s start with the basics.
What is ITAD?
IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) is the procedure of transferring and disposing of IT assets and used electronics in a secure and environmentally conscious manner.
Businesses that upgrade their electronic devices and equipment need to incorporate an operative ITAD process to ensure that their information is handled properly.
Moreover, an established ITAD company can ensure that your business stays in compliance with data disposal regulations, so you can relax knowing that your data is taken care of.
Why ITAD is Essential for Risk Management
Depending on the business, organizational strategies vary when it comes to risk management. For managing the risks associated with IT asset disposal, data security and compliance regulations are the most important aspects of proper ITAD.
Unfortunately, cyber-attacks and data breaches are common for businesses in the United States. Company laptops, cellphones, hard drives, and any other electronic device or IT equipment are at risk of being compromised in a data breach.
So, to ensure that you’re securely managing your data and IT asset disposal, you should consider using a reputable ITAD company.
ITAD and Compliance Regulations
Balancing your operating costs and industry regulation compliances can be tough. However, there is an increased risk of error when you handle your business’s own IT equipment disposal.
When you use an ITAD company, you can save your business money by avoiding fines associated with non-compliance. Plus, you can rest assured that your data is appropriately handled and destroyed.
This brings us to our next point: data destruction.
What is Data Destruction?
Data destruction is the process of erasing and destroying information to comply with industry standards. Furthermore, it involves overwriting sensitive data to ensure that it is indecipherable.
Identity theft and data breaches often correlate with improper data destruction because sensitive information is not erased before devices and equipment are disposed of. Thus, comprehensive data destruction is essential for risk management.
Improper Data Destruction Can Be Costly
A significant example of improper data management occurred when a Veterans Administration data breach lead to the leaking of personal records of about 26 million discharged veterans. Information including names, dates of birth, and social security numbers were stolen from an employee’s work device.
The VA had to $20 million in compensation to veterans who were affected by the leak and exposed to possible identity theft.
As you can see, failure to properly destroy and “sanitize” data can cost companies a lot of money, time, and resources. Therefore, it is crucial to destroy your business data effectively for ITAD.
Data Destruction Laws
Policies for data destruction have become stricter as a result of information breaches. In order to protect the information of employees and consumers, the government has enacted several laws to ensure that data is handled and destroyed properly.
The Federal Trade Commission established a data destruction policy to ensure that consumer information is correctly disposed of. Moreover, here are some of the major laws that pertain to data destruction:
- The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act requires that financial institutions must disclose their information-sharing practices to consumers.
- The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) ensures that information derived from consumer reports must be protected and disposed of after use.
- The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act forbids unauthorized computer access with the risk of criminal penalties.
- The HIPPA data destruction process involves clearing, purging, and destroying the protected health information of patients before company electronics are made for reuse.
Not only do these laws protect your customers, but they can also protect your business’s bottom line.
3 Tips For Data Destruction Compliance
In addition to making sure your data is secure, you need to follow data destruction compliance policies. Otherwise, your company might be fined or sued for non-compliance.
Being proactive is the best way to guarantee your data security and policy compliance. Here are a few proactive tips you should follow to verify that you remain compliant with data destruction laws.
1. Use Extra Security Measures for Portable Devices
Company laptops, cellphones, and other portable electronics should have strict physical security to guarantee data protection. Encrypting business information is also crucial to prevent data breaches and information leaks.
Data destruction for portable devices is of the utmost importance because information can be scraped from the electronics if not handled accordingly.
2. Digitize Records
Digitizing records helps manage who has access to what information. With physical documents and records, it can be extremely difficult to track who has seen that piece of paper.
Digital records are easier to maintain, store, and securely delete. Therefore, managing the data destruction of digital records is more reliable than managing physical records.
3. Securely Delete Personally Identifiable Information
Personally Identifiable Information (PII) is very sensitive data that must be handled with caution. It includes a combination of a person’s name with a social security number (SSN), driver’s license number, insurance information, medical information, or financial account information.
In order to comply with data destruction policies, PII must be securely deleted when it is no longer needed for business purposes.
How to Choose the Right Company For Data Destruction
Responsible IT asset disposal and data destruction starts with using a reputable ITAD company.
Protecting your sensitive data is the most important element of risk management for your business. So, choosing the right company is imperative for maintaining your business’ security.
You want to pick a company that has a good track record and can provide certificates of destruction if needed. Data sanitization is important for sensitive information, so the company should have a stringent process of cleaning and destroying that data.
It is also important that you know your electronics will not become an environmental liability. Improper IT asset disposal can have a very negative impact on the environment. So, the company should use responsible recycling procedures that dispose of obsolete and retired electronics in an environmentally friendly way.
Let Us Help You Make the Right Choice
Looking for a reputable company for your ITAD and data destruction? Well, look no further!
When you use Great Lakes Electronics for your data security and destruction, you know your information will be protected and secure. Our process eliminates the risk of identity theft or data breaches, so you can rest assured knowing that your information is properly handled.
Our commitment to eco-friendly practices also guarantees that your IT equipment and electronics are recycled and destroyed in an environmentally responsible manner.
Request a quote or call us at 888-392-7831 for device recycling, data destruction, and ITAD.