What is ITAD?
IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) is the process of disposing of used IT hardware in a secure and environmentally conscious manner.
The demand for ITAD services has increased in recent years due to the rise in IT hardware production and innovation. As technology advances, businesses and consumers are constantly looking to upgrade their IT equipment (computers, laptops, phones, servers etc.). This rise in upgrades means that there is an ever-growing number of IT devices that need to be disposed of.
For an organization, this can be tricky. How do you dispose of IT equipment? What if you have 100+ desktops that you want to replace? What do you do if you want to upgrade your data center which houses data-bearing devices?
This is where ITAD comes in. Although it is often confused with traditional electronics recycling, ITAD represents a much more complex process that aims to keep IT hardware in the market, keep businesses compliant with data protection regulations and where possible, recoup value for the seller. ITAD is a business-friendly, secure and sustainable approach to disposing of IT assets.
What is ITAD?
ITAD is a requirement for a lot of organizations that handle customer data or any other kind of sensitive data. When disposing of IT equipment, it is a legal requirement to completely erase all sensitive data, failure to comply with this can result in legal action, heavy fines and damaging PR. ITAD vendors have specialist software that can 100% sanitize data-bearing devices such as hard drives. They can provide certification of complete data erasure for peace of mind and evidence of compliance with data protection regulations.
ITAD also provides a complete chain of custody. Some vendors offer secure transport and will asset tag the equipment on arrival at the secure facility to ensure that nothing is lost and there is accountability at every step of the process. For an organization wanting to dispose of valuable equipment, this service is essential.
The ITAD process involves individually testing and grading every IT asset to find out the condition of each specific piece of equipment. Taking the time to do this is what makes ITAD unique. Traditional electronics recycling usually takes a blanket one-size fits all approach which often results in functional devices being unnecessarily disposed of. By assessing the functional, cosmetic condition, and repair needs of each device, ITAD vendors can ensure that most devices are kept in use and their lifespan is extended as much as possible. For a business disposing of large quantities of different assets, the financial and waste savings can be astronomical!
The numerous benefits of ITAD only apply when you commission a competent vendor. The best way to gauge the competence of a vendor is to look out for accreditations such as ISO 9001, 45001, and 14001. Only security vetted staff should be handling your equipment, from collection through to permanent erasure. Your ITAD vendor should also provide full documentation at every stage of the process, eliminating security risks for your business.
In summary, ITAD is a complex procedure that aims to securely remove IT assets, protect sensitive data, extend the lifespan of IT hardware, and recover value. ITAD is the most sustainable, secure and cost-effective way to dispose of IT assets!
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