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Avoid becoming an example during your next data center decommission

Washington state is home to a number of large companies with global reach. Both Seattle and Redmond are part of the business epicenter, serving as home bases for many of these companies. Companies with as expansive of a network as these Pacific Northwest-based corporations have must recognize a higher level of accountability to which they are held, meaning there is little space for a PR slip-up or a breach of ethics. Outright legal violations are even more difficult to bounce back from, for obvious reasons.

IT assets decommissioning and disposition is one of the more in-demand services on the tech end of a company, because most large businesses are connected to data networks in some way, whether through a couple of private servers or an entire data center. Change happens quickly in the data center, and a cycle of decommissions and subsequent upgrades is the new normal, making high-quality ITAD services one of the more valuable relationships a company can form.

Data center decommission decisions shouldn’t stop with IT

The proper disposal of electronics covers all three categories of protecting reputation, ethics, and legal compliance, a fact that can easily be taken for granted by non-specialists who aren’t as savvy with the technological elements of a company. Executives may assume that data security and IT asset management exclusively falls under the umbrella of the IT department. However, in the digital age, even the top rung of leadership must have working knowledge of the company’s IT assets, especially data center priorities. As the primary decision makers for the company, protecting a company’s bottom line also means understanding the risks involved with sensitive data, such as information about customers or clients. Unfortunately, many business leaders and executives are still unaware of the critical need for active involvement in researching and hiring reliable IT asset management. Perhaps, in the case of the Pacific Northwest, some even detect a lack of ITAD vendor options.

The digital age requires careful planning

Technology shifts rapidly in the 21st century, and companies must stay on top of the trends in technology or risk falling behind the competition. Most large corporations operate a data center, painting a prime example of how much data is at risk, as companies collect and analyze increasingly large amounts of data each day. Some companies are either non-compliant with data center decommissioning best practices, or have made some critical errors that compromised security and tacked hefty fines onto the company. That’s why ITAD specialists still wag their fingers at these companies, hoping they’ll recognize that it’s no longer optional to enlist an irresponsible vendor to manage company IT assets. Rather, careful research and planning should be conducted to ensure a safe, thorough data center deinstallation.

The case of Total Reclaim in Washington

There may actually be a shortage of reliable ITAD services in the Pacific Northwest region who will perform decommissions and deinstallations responsibly. Some companies seem to rely on the first recycling option they find, which can lead to a whole host of non-compliance and ethics issues. Many vendors posture themselves as leaders in the electronics recycling industry, and uninformed companies choose to work with them. Such ignorance can cause a nightmare of repercussions in some cases. One electronics recycling provider in Washington state, Total Reclaim, came under fire for its irresponsible practices, receiving a $444,000 fine from the state’s Department of Ecology after it was found sending televisions and monitors containing mercury to China, where unprotected workers disassemble the devices and are exposed to dangerous toxins. The practice is prohibited by law, and Total Reclaim willfully breached the regulations. A company identified as doing business with that vendor is going to take on some of the repercussions as well.

One of the more unsettling parts of the Total Reclaim case is their popularity as a recycling vendor. They were considered one of the leading recyclers, meaning numerous companies entrusted them with their equipment. Companies who are in need of an IT assets deinstallation should do thorough research into the vendor’s practices, certifications, and security measures.

The following are some factors to consider for selecting an ITAD professional:

Data Security

The repercussions for a company-wide security breach might seem unimaginable at first glance. “It won’t happen to my company” is a mental refrain that carries with it the potential for theft of information, negligence, and a hefty fine, not to mention a PR nightmare. Of course, most companies do take measures and enlist top-notch security protocol for their data while it’s in use. However, a critical point in the security comes after the IT equipment leaves the company’s hands to be recycled. Data can remain accessible even after the equipment is destroyed, which is why it’s necessary to work with an ITAD specialist who employs a thorough, certifiable data destruction process that wipes it completely and provides top quality security throughout the entire duration of custody of the equipment.


An ITAD specialist should carry certification, such as R2, which provides certain guidelines for compliance that hold the vendor accountable for practices that accord with environmental, security, and quality assurances. A vendor who is not certified is not likely to be fully compliant with regulations, which could potentially cost their clients as well.

Return on Value

One consideration that will pay off in more ways than one is whether the vendor can provide a high value return on the equipment being recycled. Why drop off decommissioned data center equipment with any vendor, who may very well lack the security and certification measures, when there is also the prospect of receiving a substantial return on the investment from a reliable ITAD specialist? This element of planning out a decommission should include the value return, which makes planning the upgrade more robust and flexible. A skilled IT assets and decommissions specialist will have the skills and resources to provide the return.

Companies in the Pacific Northwest, including big-name corporations operating out of places like Seattle or Redmond, WA, aren’t limited to local options for their next data center deinstallation. Some of the more reliable ITAD specialists can perform decommissions nationwide, or in some cases, globally. For maximum data security, regulatory compliance, and return on investment, it’s critical to research and establish a working relationship with a reliable IT asset disposition professional.

Effective ITAD strategies for Data Centers

Effective ITAD strategies for Data Centers

In the ever-evolving landscape of data management, businesses frequently encounter the need to retire their data center hardware. Such scenarios often arise when companies decide to shut down all or part of a data center operation. The process of decommissioning a data center is riddled with logistical intricacies, and among these, planning for the disposition of retired assets stands out as a crucial aspect. The dismantling of data center equipment without a well-thought-out strategy for reuse, remarketing, or secure disposal can lead to a host of problems.

Enhance Risk Management with ITAD

Enhance Risk Management with ITAD

Organizations are rapidly transitioning their communication systems, data storage infrastructure, and administrative functions to the digital realm, all in pursuit of maintaining a competitive edge. However, this shift toward a technologically advanced world exposes companies to higher risks of cybersecurity threats and data breaches. In essence, your business’s sensitive data is vulnerable at any given moment. Therefore, a well-rounded risk management strategy must include a robust ITAD plan to mitigate your company’s overall risk.

Enhancing Data Center Sustainability Through ITAD

Enhancing Data Center Sustainability Through ITAD

In the rapidly evolving landscape of data center operations, sustainability has emerged as a paramount concern. One of the linchpins of this sustainability drive within data centers is the practice of IT Asset Disposition (ITAD), a multifaceted process that plays a pivotal role in ensuring both ecological responsibility and data security.

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