How to Correctly Dispose of Old Equipment and Phones
All technology devices have a lifespan. As your computers, laptops, and mobiles get older – or newer versions come out – you might want to replace your devices with newer ones. Alternatively, your business may be downsizing, and you’ve now got more devices than you need.
In any case, when it comes to disposing of old IT equipment and phones (commonly known as e-waste), there’s a way to do things correctly, and it’s essential that you adhere to proper guidelines.
When it comes to disposing of old devices, you can’t simply put your old electronic equipment in the bin like it’s a piece of trash! Doing this has a number of risks – both to the safety of your business and the safety of the environment where we live. It’s better to recycle, sell or dispose of your devices instead.
Let’s take a look at this in more detail below.
Why is it important to dispose of electronic devices safely?
Your devices store a wealth of sensitive information, which may include passwords, email addresses, intellectual property and more. Even if your device is no longer working, it still has a memory chip that contains all this information. If this information were to get into the wrong hands, it could lead to a data breach!
Moreover, if your device is still working and you decide to donate or sell it, you need to ensure that the device is first wiped clean of all data. Otherwise, you could have a data breach on your hands!
Aside from security risks, it’s essential to look after e-waste because computers and laptops contain parts with toxic elements like mercury and lead. They also contain valuable recyclable metals like copper and aluminum as well.
In line with this, properly disposing and donating e-waste is part of being a good steward of the earth. Consider these stats:
- Our nation currently disposes of 300 to 400 million electronic items per year, and less than 20% of that e-waste is recycled.
- For every million cell phones we recycle, 35 thousand pounds of copper, 772 pounds of silver, 75 pounds of gold and 33 pounds of palladium can be recovered.
What are some effective methods for removing data from your device?
Before you recycle, sell or dispose of your device, you must permanently erase any data stored on it. This process is known as sanitizing. There are a number of ways to sanitize your devices, and how you go about the process will depend on the device in question.
However, before you delete the data on your device(s), you should first ensure that your data is backed up in the cloud or saved to another location – like an external hard drive. This is essential to ensuring that you don’t lose any resources as you transition out your devices.
Generally speaking, we advise you to work with a professional to make sure that your devices are correctly sanitized and backed up. Chat to us for a free consultation if you’d like assistance with this. We’d be happy to help!
Recycle, sell or dispose
There are three options for getting rid of your old devices.
- Recycle: If your hardware isn’t usable, or not functional enough to sell, consider recycling it. Most hardware suppliers, including Apple and Dell, have vendor programs for collecting old equipment for recycling. As well as this, many towns have local drop-off spots where you can leave devices for recycling. We can also take care of this process for you! Just give us a call to find out more.
- Donate: If your devices are working well, you could donate them. Many charitable organizations out there specialize in refurbishing old computers for underprivileged communities.
- Sell: There are websites online that will purchase your computer and use its parts for other devices. Or, if your device is in great working order, they may sell it on directly. As well as this, many companies offer trade-in options, where you trade in your old devices in return for credit. Companies like Amazon and Staples offer these options, but they’re best for when you have one or two devices. We’d advise getting professional assistance with selling your equipment if you have many computers.
Ultimately, properly disposing of e-waste can help the environment and ensure your business is secure.
Get assistance with recycling, selling and disposing of your old IT devices!
Old computers can be security risks, but we will help you keep your files and data safe.
Skyline IT Management can help you dispose of every piece of IT equipment that you have safely, securely, and efficiently. Call our friendly team now and let’s look after the planet together.
Book a Call today to schedule a technology consultation.