R2: Self-Made Claims are Not the Same
While these companies certainly may offer valuable services, its important to understand the difference between using a company that says they use a certified partner, and a company who is actually certified themselves.
A certified facility is required to undergo annual audits conducted by an approved certifying body for that particular certification, whether R2, e-Stewards, OHSAS, ISO 14001 or NAID. This ensures all standards are being followed including data security, health, safety and environmental requirements when shredding hard drives, securely transporting or storing data-containing devices, and tearing down or processing equipment for recycling.
Companies who are not certified themselves are not required to operate under these same standards and have no oversight from the certification program, even though they may use a certified downstream partner. It takes very little investment to start a recycling or ITAD business, anyone with a truck and a building can do it. Making a claim of “no landfill”, handing out certifications of destruction made in a word template, and promoting the use of “certified recyclers”, it’s very easy to fool customers into giving you their trust. However, without third-party audits and the oversight of actual certification bodies, these claims are “simply self-made and unverified” explains SERI.
“Using a facility that is not R2 Certified and monitored may increase the risk of your electronics being diverted—which, in turn, may increase your exposure to data breaches, illegal exports, and improper disposal“ – SERI.
By using a certified company to handle your electronic equipment for resale or recycling, you have verification that your IT devices will be handled in accordance with the requirements of the certifications they adhere to. When a company is certified, it shows they have made the voluntary investment to demonstrate their commitment to data security, sustainability and responsibility when it comes to reusing and recycling all equipment that passes through their control.
The value of certifications such as R2 and e-Stewards is immeasurable when it comes to trusting a partner with your valuable IT equipment and proprietary or private information that may still exist on your devices.
“The Bottom Line: An organization that uses R2 Certified downstream recyclers may be properly managing risks, but there is no oversight or assurance of these self-made claims” – SERI
You can reduce your risk of legal liabilities, data breaches, and loss of public trust by partnering directly with an R2 Certified facility, protecting yourself, your company, and your customers.
If your business is located in Sioux Falls, Sioux City, Fargo, Omaha or the greater South Dakota or North Dakota area, SEAM can help. As the only certified vendor in the region, we offer customized electronics recycling, data destruction and equipment resale solutions to fit organizational in any industry. Contact us today!