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Computer Recycling Chain of Custody

A chain of custody is a series of documents that proves the possession, security and transfer of IT assets, including everything from computer hard drives to wireless scanners and Smart-UPS. In the world of IT Asset Disposition (ITAD), which includes data erasure, hardware disposal and recycling, maintaining this type of documentation is key. In the event of an audit, or in case anything ever goes wrong, a chain of custody proves that you have acted in compliance with industry regulations and can help you build a legal defense.

For example, let’s say you sent some computer equipment to a local computer recycling company. One year later, out of the blue, a state sheriff delivers a letter directly to the CEO of your company, which has been named in an environmental lawsuit for the improper disposal of computer equipment. Apparently, they found your old cathode ray tubes (CRTs) in a state reservoir. Sound far-fetched? It’s not! This exact situation actually occurred at the Quabbin Reservoir in Massachusetts.

The EPA has two classifications for waste: Universal Waste and Hazardous Waste. They each require two totally different chains of custody. Computer hardware is defined as Universal Waste. However, if such equipment is found in, say, a state reservoir, the EPA immediately classifies it as Hazardous Waste since it is potentially polluting the area. Unfortunately, the reports produced by most computer recyclers are not sufficient to withstand an environmental lawsuit that classifies your recycled computer hardware as Hazardous Waste, so you’d be set up to fail.

How can you prevent this from ever happening to you? Work with a computer recycler like CRUSA. We provide a complete chain of custody and pride ourselves on providing the best set of documentation in the industry. This means all of our clients are completely prepared in case of an audit or if they need to respond to a legal claim. Keep an eye on future blog posts for more information on the key documents needed for a best-in-class chain of custody. If you’d like to learn more now, please contact us.

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