Getting Rid Of IT Equipment? Be Very Careful

Most executives, 70% to be exact, are unaware that improper disposal of IT equipment can lead to fines, penalties and even imprisonment.

According to a study recently released by Hewlett-Packard, legislation dictates that a company's top executives may be subject to penalties resulting from security breaches due to an unlawful dumping of IT equipment containing confidential information. The survey was conducted by London-based research firm TNS and sampled 300 corporate management and IT executives at companies with 500 and more employees.

The biggest concern regarding IT equipment disposal is data security and privacy. The survey cites the example of one such law, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which authorizes criminal penalties of up to $250,000 and/or 10 years imprisonment per violation of security standards for patient health information.

Additionally, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act establishes financial institution standards for safeguarding customer information and imposes penalties of up to $100,000 per violation.

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