Securing IT Hardware Assets – An Opportunity for MSPs

By Castaway Tech | March 3, 2020

Differentiation in Managed IT Service Businesses

Companies – whether small, medium, or large – are experiencing continuous pressure for change in computing resources. Software is changing from proprietary solutions to open source, and hardware architecture is rapidly moving to the cloud for convenience and performance. C-level executives are looking for ways to remain competitive while limiting security risks.

While Managed Service Providers (MSP) are positioned to provide this advice, most are focused on traditional IT services and underestimate the IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) compliance requirements that companies now face. This provides an advantage to those IT advisors who are well-informed and pro-active to take advantage of the growing opportunity of partnering to provide comprehensive ITAD services, truly closing the professional IT services loop.

Growing IT Hardware Security Risks

The growing number of computer hardware devices approaching end-of-life combined with not knowing how to appropriately dispose of them is becoming a huge risk to companies and their IT staff and service providers. ITAD is still a relatively new and emerging industry that was created out of necessity in the era of ever-tightening data security requirements.

Unfortunately, ITAD has not been the focus of most IT professionals tasked with managing those devices. This is true for Managed Services Providers (MSP) as well. For example, some of the MSPs who say they have an “ITAD” solution are unaware of the compliance requirements for documented chains of custody and appropriate service provider certifications. This problem is growing as more and more companies move their computing resources to the cloud.

According to a report by Zion Market Research, “The global IT asset disposition market is anticipated to showcase an impressive growth trajectory… The global IT asset disposition (ITAD) market was valued at USD 11,326.14 million and expected to reach around USD 18,703.42 million by 2022 with [a] CAGR of 8.33% between the years 2016-2022.”

Companies will be looking to their IT advisors for more than the usual IT services of installs, upgrades, online security and credentials. They are looking to their MSP to provide the answers. One of those questions is what to do with their hardware and devices. Simply hiring somebody to take the equipment “away” is not the answer.

To continue to maintain client trust, it is beneficial for MSPs to understand the role of ITAD within the hardware lifecycle and the associated security risks it presents to the customer. Is your company in the IT Services field or do you describe your company as a Managed Service Provider?

ITAD Compliance and Certification Requirements

MSPs who are disposing hardware and do not have ITAD certification could be creating potential risks for their customers. For example, if you hire or refer your client to an uncertified company (or a guy with pick-up truck who “gets it done”) to dispose of equipment, you are not destroying the data and documenting the process, as required by law in many cases, to prevent somebody from later recovering the data from those devices.

Compliance requirements include following federal and state industry laws and regulations as well as providing documentation. They include:

  • Environment-friendly and certified recycling
  • Detailed financial regulatory reporting
  • Data sanitization/Data destruction
  • Transfer of ownership and liability
  • Value recovery
  • Detail-oriented processes

Differentiate Your MSP Business 

If your company does business as an MSP, you are your customer’s direct contact for identifying potential risks and advising on how to manage them. If you are not currently providing certified ITAD services, it’s possible you could be losing business to your competition who is offering these services. Remember the forecasted growth in the ITAD industry!

You have an opportunity to differentiate yourself by adding value with ITAD services, by either getting certified and providing the services yourself or by working with an experienced certified partner. Clearly the latter approach offers you an immediate turnkey solution and one that allows you (the MSP) to stick with your core competencies.

Working with a Certified ITAD Partner

By working with a partner who is ITAD certified, you not only protect your customer and your own business, but you also gain greater trust with your customer.

Castaway Technologies is NAID AAA Certified. Our professionals are white glove experts who are comfortable and versatile in working with clients of all sizes from the SMB to very large-scale clients like hospitals, universities, and enterprise companies. The company started as an ITAD service provider and continues to specialize only in ITAD services.

Castaway is the safe bet when it comes to ITAD partnering, not only for their expertise but also because of their professional drivers and technicians who are background-checked, drug tested and comfortable working in any business environment.

Castaway makes the ITAD process for you and your customers much easier! Proven chain-of-custody and documentation processes document all IT asset handling and certified media and hard drive destruction and data sanitation services. The company also gives back to the community by providing quality computer equipment to area nonprofits who need them. Essentially, Castaway provides everything you and your customers need for ITAD.

What’s Next?

ITAD is a growing and pervasive need that is not going away. Take advantage of this opportunity.

Companies may be retiring hardware to move to the cloud, but many will continue using a percentage of hardware assets onsite. All these devices have end-of-life disposal requirements. Cloud companies need ITAD, too. All those redundant servers and data centers require hardware replacements creating additional ITAD opportunities. Castaway understands and continually studies these changes and we’re poised to scale up our business to serve clients well into the future.

For further information about ITAD and its certification requirements, and how you can take advantage of the changing market, give us a call at (978) 208-4730.

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