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The Importance of Secure IT Destruction When Moving your Office

Published on 20 March 2020

The Importance of Secure IT Destruction When Moving your Office

Moving your office is a complex process that needs careful planning and consideration. It helps to break down the move into smaller, more manageable steps to keep the task from becoming too overwhelming.

Moving office is far more involved than simply the removal of office furniture and IT assets and relocating them elsewhere. When it comes to moving your IT assets and electronic equipment, you will need to complete an in-depth IT infrastructure assessment, not only of your existing IT assets at your current location but also at your new location.

Your infrastructure assessment should include the following elements: 

• An evaluation of power, especially uninterruptible power supply for critical office IT equipment such as ventilation and cooling for server rooms, network cabling and IT equipment positioning

• Assess your data services: is it more cost-effective to order new services or transfer existing services 

• Assess your IT assets and look for possible technology upgrades where needed 

• Create a move plan for your server and critical hardware relocation

• Evaluate the current condition and age of your existing cabling

• Evaluate your telephone system – is it worth removing to reinstall or do you need to order a new telephony installation? Does your new premises have a working system already in place? Will it meet your requirements?

• Evaluate your WIFI network coverage against industry best practices 

• List and tag all redundant electronic equipment and IT assets that you don't want to take with you

• Make an inventory of all office IT assets, not forgetting conference rooms and shared areas

• Make an inventory of your critical business and support applications

• Transfer or create a new set of phone numbers

Once you have worked through your plan you should know exactly which assets you need to take with you and those that are no longer required and redundant.  

An office relocation, whether you are moving to larger offices as part of a business expansion or downsizing to smaller premises, will necessitate a review of your IT assets, which will no doubt uncover an amount of broken, obsolete or redundant electronic equipment.

The problem you then have is what to do with it or more importantly how are you going to safely dispose of it without risking a data breach or damage to the environment by sending your waste to landfill?

Protecting your company data during a move

The main issue of an office move is how to prevent exposing your company to the risk of a data breach. An office move can leave you vulnerable to data loss, whether it is accidental or done maliciously.

Be aware that there are organised ‘data theft’ criminals that prey on businesses during a business relocation because it can be an ideal time for them to look to steal sensitive data while staff are otherwise preoccupied with the move.  

Data theft can range from very sophisticated to downright opportunistic. Criminals can pose as data destruction companies that promise to wipe clean your computer hard drives but instead will lift the data to sell on to their network to commit business fraud and ID theft.

Some opportunist thieves simply target your business and will hang around on moving day. They may attempt to physically steal IT equipment and data-bearing storage devices from the back of your removal trucks or worse still collect any that you have simply discarded in a skip. 

This is why we recommend that companies don’t look to carry out their own office moves when servers and IT equipment is involved to avoid the risk of a data breach through opportunist theft or calculated data theft.

Create and execute a plan for recycling IT equipment

Because data security issues act to complicate your moving process, you need to plan well in advance of your move to make sure that your redundant IT assets and electronic equipment containing data storage, isn’t simply left piling up in a corner of the office. This could include backup tapes, computer hard drives, mobile phones, SIM card, memory stick, as well as old computer and server equipment.

Remember that as a company, you are responsible for keeping your stored data safely protected under current GDPR guidelines. Therefore, when planning an office move it makes sense to work with a company such as Restore Technology who will be able to advise you on the safe storage and disposal of your redundant IT assets so that you remain compliant at all times. 

Secure data destruction

When you have amassed a stock of older, obsolete or broken IT equipment it is the hard drives that contain the data and therefore need to be completely destroyed to help prevent data loss and ensure you comply with data protection regulations. 

By going through the process of proper data destruction with a professional industry expert such as Restore Technology, you will be confident that you have met your requirements. Erasing data from hard drives isn't as simple as wiping the disc clean, reformatting the drive or deleting files in Windows. Restore Technology has the right industry-standard destruction equipment to physically destroy hard drives so they will no longer be usable. 

Criminals will be unable to lift any data from your hard drives because we will reduce them to mere fragments. We have industrial strength shredding machines that can shred your hard drives as if they were paper. What's more, you can witness the whole destruction process with your own eyes when you book our mobile data destruction service because we will bring our shredding equipment directly to your business premises.

How our on-site data destruction service works 

Our on-site data destruction shredding service is probably the most convenient and safe option that you can take. Because we will drive our mobile shredding vehicle to your business premises, you get the reassurance of watching the destruction of your hard drives take place but you will also know that not a single shred of your sensitive company data will leave your business premises intact or in any sort of usable form.

Your chain of custody will not be broken and once your hard drives have been shredded you will be issued with an official Certificate of Destruction, which you will need for auditing purposes.  

How our team works

Restore Technology IT disposal services are operated by our team of vetted security experts. Once you have booked a visit from us, our team will arrive with our state of the art company shredding vehicle and our team will be dressed in company uniform and will carry official ID, so you will know it is us.

We will park our shredding vehicle on your premises, so if you have a secure loading area, courtyard or company car park where we can operate, you will be invited to watch the whole collection and destruction process.

Our supervising officer will issue you with a Certificate of Destruction on completion that records the date, time and a detailed inventory of exactly what hard drive, IT asset or data-bearing device was securely shredded. 

Removal of your waste product for recycling

Restore Technology operates a sustainable business certified to the e-Stewards® standard. This means that we operate in an environmentally responsible way and ensure that the waste product produced by our IT destruction activities do not go on to cause any environmental issues.

Many IT assets and electronic equipment used by businesses contain a mix of heavy metals that are highly toxic to the environment. We make sure that none of this waste ends up in a landfill or gets exported to another country for disposal.

Because we operate a strict zero-landfill policy, all the waste that is produced from our services goes on to be carefully sorted for re-use and recycling. We operate to create as little environmental impact as we possibly can. This, in turn, reflects well on your company. By using our IT destruction and disposal services, you can boost your 'Green' credentials and take pride in the fact that your business is doing its bit to help lessen its impact.

Safe disposal of other IT assets

Because you need to make sure you dispose of your IT waste carefully, by working with Restore Technology you can be secure in the knowledge that none of your data will be at risk of exposure. However, what if you have quite a few bits and pieces of still-useful IT equipment that you no longer need but still has some value? 

With the help of Restore Technology, we can take your IT assets and once all stored data has been removed from them, we can have them refurbished and put back into the circular economy.

This means that you can reduce your environmental impact even more and recoup some of your original cost of purchase. We have a series of downstream partners where we can sell on refurbished IT assets and electronic equipment. You will be able to recover part of your original asset costs and be helping a potential new start-up business get off the ground that may not have the budget to stretch to buying brand-new equipment.

Breaking down equipment for components

If you should have accumulated a few obsolete IT assets or have some that are broken beyond repair, we can help you out here too by breaking down these assets to harvest the raw materials they contain. There may be some useful components that can also be reused, so you should never think that your redundant equipment is no longer of value to your company.

Most IT equipment contains base metals, glass and plastic that can be harvested, melted down and reused again to make brand new IT devices and electronic equipment, thus extending the life of the equipment uniquely and helping to keep more waste out of the landfill.

What if we can't use your on-site IT destruction services?

We understand that not every business premises will have a suitable ground-floor access point where we can safely park our mobile shredding vehicle. If you have a suite of offices on the 3rd floor of an office block, for example, it may be impractical for us to operate our on-site data destruction service.

In this case, we would highly recommend that you use our secure off-site data destruction services. You can arrange for us to come out and collect your redundant IT assets and hard drives for safe destruction and disposal at one of our secure destruction centres that will be close to your business premises.

Don't worry! You will remain in full awareness of the movement of your valuable assets throughout the whole collection, transportation and final destruction process. As mentioned above, our vetted security collection team will visit your premises and create a detailed inventory of what equipment you need disposed of. 

We will then place your IT assets in our fully-supervised at all times, unmarked security vehicle to transport to our destruction centre. Our vehicles are fully tracked and you can monitor the position of our truck (and your precious cargo) and the final destruction at our secure processing centre through our STREAMS® web-based customer portal.

You will have a reportable audit trail for your spent IT assets and be awarded with a Certificate of Destruction once your assets have reached the end of their life and have been destroyed. 

Therefore, when considering an office move engage Restore Technology. We will be able to advise you on the safe storage and disposal of redundant IT assets as well as the secure relocation of those you need to take with you. We are very highly certified, take a look at our quality page to learn about our IT services certifications.

Why not contact our team today to discuss your IT relocation and disposal requirements as part of your office move.