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Reduce the Risk of Clients Data Being Leaked When Disposing of IT Equipment

25 October 2021

A lot of businesses find themselves in a sticky situation when it’s time to sell their used computers, laptops, or other IT equipment. You need to ensure that all data on your company-owned hardware is properly erased before you take any further action along the lines of recycling or resale. Many small and mid-sized businesses don’t have the right tools or processes in place to correctly manage IT disposal, so it’s best to contact a specialist.

FGD can meet and address all of your security requirements to ensure that the collection, processing and resale of your redundant laptops, hard drives, and all other hardware is done safely and securely.

What Should You Do with Unused IT Equipment?

When IT equipment is no longer being used, there is no point leaving it to gather dust in the corner. Instead, you could realise a financial return by selling your unwanted IT equipment and using this to purchase new hardware alternatives or even gifting this value to charitable organisations who can buy more suitable equipment for those in need. The key thing to manage is that any data remaining on your devices is securely destroyed before the device is reused.

If your equipment has reached the end of its usable life cycle and cannot be repurposed or refurbished, it may be that it must simply be destroyed and recycled into material parts. The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) regulations are designed to ensure that electronic waste products are treated safely and appropriately, and that they are reused where possible.

Because of this, it is important to consider the options carefully when deciding how to deal with your unused IT equipment.

Managing Client Data When Disposing of Equipment

Businesses must meet certain requirements when processing and managing customer data and this extends to client data protection when disposing of IT equipment too. You might be familiar with the requirements of the UK General Data Protection Regulations (UK GDPR) when it comes to data processing, but how much do you know about data erasure and destruction?

Whether you choose to resell, recycle, or destroy laptops, computers and other hardware, it’s vital to ensure that client data has been fully removed. As data is usually stored on a device’s hard drive, HDDs and SSDs must be suitably processed to ensure that client data is rendered inaccessible and unrecoverable.

At FGD, we provide a variety of secure solutions that facilitate data removal, including:

1. Data Erasure

Erasing client data from hard drives enables IT equipment to be resold as a complete unit to maximise the revenue generated. If you want to recoup some of your original investment, selling the equipment to a third party IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) company is the best solution to securely recycle your redundant assets and achieve a buyback value whilst following all relevant legislation.

At FGD, we use industry-leading Blancco data erasure software to ensure the secure removal of data. Approved by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) and compliant with HMG Infosec Standard No. 5, professional application of this software ensures the reliable and certified removal of data.

As a Blancco Gold Partner, FGD uses the latest software and techniques to deliver market-leading data erasure services, along with data erasure reports and comprehensive asset audit reports.

2. Hard Drive Shredding

If you have a large volume of data bearing media that you want to dispose of and your security protocols require physical destruction of devices, hard drive shredding is likely to be the most efficient method. Suitable for use with hard drives and electronic media, including CDs and DVDs and flash media, the equipment is completely destroyed to ensure that no data is recoverable.

With our AMS-750 Shredder and dedicated secure container vehicle, our hard drive shredding services are second-to-none! Capable of destroying over 1000 HDDs or over 2000 SSDs in a day, FGD’s hard drive shredding services provide an effective and efficient way to manage the secure disposal of IT equipment and include a comprehensive serialised audit and data destruction certificate for your records.

3. Hard Drive Crushing

When only a limited number of hard drives need to be destroyed, hard drive crushing is a great option. On-site crushing involves destroying the internal platters of the hard drive by using a pneumatic punch to cause irreparable damage to the drive platters and housing, rendering the data inaccessible and unrecoverable.

As our portable equipment can be used on-site, it is easy to facilitate the secure disposal of IT equipment and naturally all data destruction tasks will be associated with comprehensive data destruction certificates and audits.

Disposing of Business Data

While increasing data regulations mean that the management of client data is an important issue for commercial organisations, you shouldn’t overlook the importance of your business data either. This confidential information must be kept secure at all times, including before and during disposal.

By using hard drive data sanitisation or destruction services, you can ensure that any information relating to your organisation is made inaccessible and unrecoverable too.

IT Equipment Disposal and Recycling

While hard drive erasure, shredding, or crushing are effective and secure ways of managing client data during the disposal process, you still need to consider how to deal with the other components. If a hard drive is removed from a desktop computer, for example, you may still require the disposal of the tower itself, cables, keyboards, mice, monitors and more. This goes for data centre equipment too.

Fortunately, meeting regulatory requirements and finding cost-effective methods of IT equipment recycling UK needn’t be as difficult as it sounds. With FGD’s zero-landfill policy, you can be confident that your unwanted IT equipment is disposed of securely and in an environmentally friendly way.

From desktops and laptops to servers and networking and everything in between, our vetted personnel will collect the designated equipment from your premises at a convenient time to ensure the hassle-free and secure disposal of unwanted IT equipment.

Asset Management and Disposal from FGD

Despite strict requirements regarding the disposal of electrical and electronic equipment and stringent regulations relating to data management, the disposal of unwanted IT hardware is now easier than ever with FGD.

Whether you want to resell, recycle, or simply destroy your unwanted equipment, we are on hand to provide the secure, professional services you require. To learn more about securing client data when disposing of IT equipment, contact our experienced team now on +44 (0)330 390 7536.