Disposal Box Programs Are Good, but Not Good Enough

by Mike Hunter

There is an emerging awareness that “disposal box” handling of retired assets is not good enough, according to the International Association of IT Asset Managers, the leading authority on IT asset management.

One impact of the coronavirus pandemic on business has been causing organizations to no longer operate from a central location. When it comes to IT asset disposition, that is problematic because a vendor cannot easily pick up assets and dispose of them in a secured fashion. This issue has led to the innovative fix known as Disposal Box Programs. 

These programs begin when a consumer requests a packaging box from the vendor, who ships the box to wherever the consumer is located. The consumer then packs the assets that need to be pushed through the disposition process into the box and mails it back to the vendor. 

This process was a great short-term solution to the problem, but it must not remain a permanent solution. This is because there is a lack of a clear chain of custody; for instance, if the package is lost by the mailing service, the vendor can state that no package was sent back, and the organization can say it mailed the package and the vendor lost it. A worse scenario is if the package is lost or stolen and the data on the device is hacked. 

Now that organizations have had time to adapt to the WFH regimen, they should move away from Disposal Box Programs and return to ITAM best disposal practices with a secure end-to-end chain of custody to ensure data is wiped properly and with full transparency and security.

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