With the digital age comes the necessity to store, manage and protect sensitive information. From financial information to personal data, companies must give data security maximum attention to protect themselves and their customers.
One critical aspect of data security that's often overlooked is the proper disposition of IT assets. IT asset disposition (ITAD) companies have a crucial role in ensuring they meet standards and regulations to ensure maximum data security during disposition
In this blog post, we'll explore how companies can ensure high levels of data security, how ITAD companies effectively erase data and the importance of ITAD data security compliance.
What are the foundations of good data security?
Maintaining high data security is essential with the ever-growing reliance on technology for businesses worldwide. It's crucial to keep sensitive information from falling into the wrong hands, and there are several actions companies can take to protect their data.
The first step towards good data security is identifying the critical data that needs protection. This generally includes personally identifiable information (PII), intellectual property, financial data or any other sensitive data that could harm the business or its customers if compromised. Once this data has been identified, access controls must be implemented so only authorized personnel can access it.
Companies can then utilize other data security measures such as encryption, firewalls, antivirus software and regular data backups to ensure high data security.
But what about when the time comes to replace or upgrade IT assets? Competitive businesses are constantly looking for new ways to generate efficiencies, which often comes hand-in-hand with upgrading their technology.
Applying a zero-risk strategy to data destruction is essential for achieving peace of mind for businesses looking to move on their IT assets. This is where IT asset disposition companies can lend a helping hand.
Maintaining high data security during IT asset disposition (ITAD)
The proper disposition of IT assets is critical to maintaining high data security. IT assets such as laptops, servers and hard drives can store vast amounts of sensitive data, and the improper disposition of said assets can lead to ramifications such as identity theft, data breaches and other forms of cybercrime.
ITAD companies play a crucial role in ensuring the secure destruction of sensitive information, handling assets in a way that complies with industry standards and regulations and reducing the risk of security threats.
So, what methods are available to businesses looking to erase data and achieve complete peace of mind over their information? TES offers several on-site data destruction methods to ensure data erasure that exceeds industry standards.
Degaussing involves destroying data on a storage device by removing its magnetism. TES' on-site process begins with an engineer delivering degaussing equipment to your site, which applies an electromagnetic pulse of 9,000 Oersteds, almost twice the coercivity level in today's disk drives.
This erases all information on the storage device and renders the hard drive inoperable, meaning it can never be reused.
Puncturing involves machinery that punctures multiple pins in the storage device and the memory chips within them, eradicating the data.
Once the memory chips have been destroyed following the puncturing process, the hard drive is littered with holes to add extra peace of mind.
Shredding differs from puncturing and can be applied to various storage devices, including SSD drives, USB drives, SIM cards, SD and MicroSD cards, and spindle drives.
Memory devices can be shredded per your company's security policies before being certified as destroyed. Waste is then removed and goes through a recycling process.
Whichever data destruction method is applied, maintaining ITAD data security compliance is essential and can be achieved by following industry standards closely.
Standards and regulations for ITAD data security compliance
ITAD companies must meet specific standards and regulations to ensure secure data destruction. These regulations protect businesses and individuals from improper IT asset disposition risks.
A critical standard for ITAD companies is the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Publication 800-88. The NIST 800-88 standard provides guidelines for secure data destruction and covers the types of media that can be destroyed and the methods that can be applied. NIST 800-88 is now widely adopted and recognized by governments and corporations as the best-in-class method for ensuring effective media sanitization.
For a more detailed breakdown of the NIST 800-88 standard and the different methods available within the regulations, visit our blog post here.
The importance of ITAD data security compliance
The most vital aspect of compliance is assuring businesses that their data has been destroyed safely and securely. These regulations are carefully designed for ITAD companies to follow, exponentially reducing the risk of data breaches and cyber threats. Failing to comply with these regulations can lead to legal and financial consequences, alongside reputational damage.
For businesses, choosing an ITAD company that complies with these standards is crucial for protecting sensitive information. Some companies — like TES — achieve a data overwrite standard that exceeds NIST 800-88 regulations, giving you extra peace of mind over your data.
Looking to ensure sustainability in IT?
Aligning your IT processes to your company's sustainability strategy can be a long road. From ensuring your asset disposition procedures are environmentally responsible to sustainable IT management, there are many things to consider.
That's why we've put together a handy checklist that explains how your company can be more sustainable regarding its IT.
It covers business continuity, risk management and asset value optimization and will help you towards sustainable IT processes.
To access your copy of the checklist for life, click below.