The weight of compliance and the legal system is so heavy that companies using any electronic assets, from distributed PCs and notebooks to centralized data centers have to be extremely careful when considering end-of-life of those assets. There are many factors involved in identifying risk, but one can zoom on two broad elements of compliance involved in asset disposition:
1- Data risk: this is a no brainer and banks, insurance companies, healthcare institutions, etc own assets that have confidential information. Insuring that the retirement of those aging assets is done in ways that guarantee full data erasure is a must, not an option. Selecting the proper asset cleansing technology and partners who would handle the process should be front and center for folks in procurement, legal and IT departments.
2- Environmental risk: without proper due diligence, your assets can end up in landfills, hidden warehouses, and in third-world nations. Not sure this is what your company wants and not a good way to protect your brand. When selecting a disposition vendor, insure that their environmental practices are as compliant as possible, starting with services that offer greater environmental payback, such as reuse/remarket. And if recycled, tracking where the assets end up going is a must.
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