We wish you and yours a very happy holiday and a new year full of laughter, comfort, and blessings. We hope you’ll enjoy our holiday video (click to play)!
The Securis Team
Earlier this month, Securis employees and a few guests headed to the Ritz-Carlton in Tysons Corner for the High Tech Prayer Breakfast where they occupied five tables. The breakfast is a ministry dedicated to bringing the Gospel of Jesus to the business community of Northern Virginia and Washington DC. The annual breakfast features well-known speakers from the community who deliver a message about the influence a personal relationship with Jesus Christ has had on his or her life and business.
Securis is pleased to support the annual event, particularly because it is aligned with the company’s core focus, which is to serve employees, customers, and vendors like Christ served his people. High Tech Prayer Breakfast – DC Metro, Inc., is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) with the mission to minister to the spiritual needs of individuals in the high tech business community in an interdenominational manner.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that on America Recycles Day, they will release the final version of The National Recycling Strategy. This is part one in a series on building a circular economy. During last year’s America Recycles Day, the EPA announced the goal of increasing the United States recycling rate to 50% by 2030.
Read more about the overview and methods of measurement for the three goals on epa.gov.
As a data destruction and electronics recycling company, Securis was interested in the information gathered regarding the recycling of electronics. The EPA has created a table that shows data from 1960 to 2018 showing the total number of tons of electronics recycled, composted, combusted with energy recovery and landfilled. See the full data table on the EPA’s electronics page.
For more information on what your organization can do, understanding the issues, and facts and figures about waste, materials, and recycling, visit their Sustainable Materials Management page.
It’s important to properly recycle computers and other e-waste. Electronics contain harmful substances such as arsenic and lead that will leak into the ground and water if not recycled. To successfully process each material that devices contain, it’s important to know how to take apart a computer. In addition to the environmentally-friendly process for e-waste recycling, retired electronic equipment contains business and personal information that needs to be securely destroyed so that it doesn’t end up in the wrong hands.
1. Unscrew the four screws (if available) or remove one of the side covers, usually found on the right side of the computer if you’re facing it.
2. Disconnect all the connectors and remove the DVD player.
3. Remove the power supply by unplugging the connectors, then unscrewing the unit from the frame.
4. Remove the hard drive from the side of the slot by unscrewing the four screws securing it in place.
5. Remove the button battery and heat sink from the motherboard. Also, remove the memory by pushing the clips on both ends of the module.
6. Remove the CPU fan connected to the heat sink by removing the four screws that secure it in place.
7. Disconnect all cables from the motherboard, then unscrew it from the frame.
That’s it – the easy steps on how to take apart a computer for recycling. Once the recycling process is complete, information that remains on hard drives and other data-containing devices is ready for data destruction. Securis has this process down to a science and is able to dismantle multiple computers at a time.
This post was written by Securis’ Warehouse Manager in Operations, Rida Ibrahim.
Montgomery County, Maryland’s Department of Environmental Protection recently held a live webinar discussing how businesses should recycle electronics and other items. The webinar began with a recycling exercise on sorting a variety of materials. Some materials end up in a comingled dumpster, others in a secure electronics recycling bin, and some in a trashcan.
Montgomery County, MD services more than 1.5 million residents and employees. The County is committed to providing education and resources geared toward reducing waste and recycling more. The following video contains comprehensive recycling information.
Securis’ own Dan Mattock, EVP of Sales and Marketing, speaks to electronic waste recycling (timestamp 36:44).
Mr. Mattock discusses the best practices for recycling electronics, beginning with the definition of e-waste. The simple definition of e-waste is electronics that have reached the end of their life. Corporate e-waste typically includes computers, servers, monitors, cell phones, mice and keyboards, memory sticks, hard drives, solid-state drives, and more.
Residential e-waste recycling needs aren’t much different as households have multiple devices that they replace as new models and technology is introduced. He continues to discuss the dangers of electronic devices ending up in landfills. They may contain lead, arsenic, and mercury which is harmful to the environment.
Mattock also explains what environmental responsibility means, and how it helps companies’ bottom lines and the environment. He continues by discussing the challenges of data security, environmental risk, and disposal costs. These are an issue for government and private sector companies alike. It’s important to remember that old electronics still contain sensitive data, and if you’ve upgraded your electronics, the data that remains on them must be destroyed using a trusted electronic recycling program.
After Mattock’s presentation, there’s an informative section on the best practices for recycling scrap metal. Next is a section on recycling plastic bags and like materials. Be sure to watch the webinar recording through the end for the Q&A section. Questions about how businesses should recycle electronics and other items are likely answered here.
As always, if you have questions on how businesses should recycle electronics, please contact Securis.
At Securis, diversity isn’t just a buzzword. It’s a core company strength. It’s an acknowledgment that while people come from many different walks of life, there are more common values that bind and connect us than divide us. When it comes to how Securis identifies employees who lead, thrive, and innovate, there are several key factors.
“I love seeing people from different backgrounds working together to achieve shared goals,” says Jeremy Farber, founder and CEO of Securis. “If you’ve never witnessed a native Arabic speaker try to explain something to a native Spanish speaker who doesn’t speak much English, and are able to watch them work together to move forward, bearing witness to the moment it clicks is priceless. It doesn’t simply help two people solve a problem or work smarter together, it forms a bond that extends way beyond just a 9-5 job.”
Those who thrive at Securis don’t see this as just a job. They see their roles as a career and an opportunity to achieve the American Dream. Many who began in the warehouse as hourly workers have advanced to senior members of the Securis management team.
“Aligning to our Core Values is one thing we look for, but another key factor is if people are looking for just a paycheck or really want a career,” says Presson. “We’re looking for people who want a career, who want to look for opportunities to contribute to the growth of the company. Having people who want to be here and genuinely care about their coworkers makes all the difference in fostering a positive work environment for everybody.” In fact, the managers of the Service, Shipping, and Disassembly divisions all began as hourly warehouse workers and were able to advance.
“I can teach skills. I can teach how to do something,” Teresa says. “I can’t teach personality, attitude, or drive. That’s why during the interview process, I‘m more concerned with someone’s attitude and how they interact rather than if they look good on paper.”
“Part of it’s nature and part of it’s nurture,” Jeremy explains. “Teresa and her team do a great job finding the right people to fill vacancies. But then, even if people aren’t quite a perfect fit, when they get into the office or the warehouse, and see how well everybody’s working together, and how open everybody is, and how much fun people are having, it’s infectious. People want to be in that sort of environment, and to contribute to it.”
“Our team has a low turnover rate – especially for warehouse work,” Teresa says. “Our commitment to our team and our core values means people grow and thrive here, and our clients want to keep working with us over the long term.”
Throughout Securis’ offices and warehouses – the headquarters in Chantilly, VA, and regional offices throughout Virginia and North Carolina – the company’s core values are displayed prominently.
When hiring staff – be it a C-suite executive or an intern – Securis works hard to ensure that the new team member will be a good fit and live up to Securis’ core values. Using that benchmark as guidance, Securis has been able to create and foster a caring, familial environment that celebrates diversity, creates opportunities for all employees, and provides a safe space for employees of all backgrounds.Are you or someone you know looking for a career in a dynamic, enriching environment like Securis? Check out our current openings and see if a career at Securis is right for you.
From the very beginning, Securis has prided itself on its commitment to diversity – not just in words, but in actions and in the values that the company lives by every day. It’s a way of looking at problems, addressing challenges, and collaborating to come up with solutions to client’s issues.
“One of the things I’m proudest of is not just the diversity of our workforce but the different perspectives, ideas, and opinions that grow out of such diversity,” says Securis Founder and CEO Jeremy Farber. “We have people working for us from all over the world – Asia, South America, Europe, Africa. We’ve talked about getting flags from all the different countries to hang in the warehouse, like a little U.N.”
“In homogenous work environments,” Farber says, “you get a lot of groupthink. You get a lot of similar backgrounds coming up with similar solutions to similar problems. You don’t get that with Securis. Instead, people from all over the world come together with their own perspectives and opinions while working towards a shared goal. Securis and our customers benefit from our workforce diversity.”
Some of the countries represented through the Securis workforce are Egypt, El Salvador, Vietnam, Guatemala, Tunisia, and India, to name just a few. Representatives from these countries hold a range of jobs from the warehouse to the back office to the front office.
“We want the best people, the most qualified people, in different roles. It doesn’t matter where they’re from, education level, what have you,” continued Farber, “If they started out with Securis and worked hard and worked well, then there is an opportunity for them to climb the ladder.”
Given Securis’ business, diversity in the workplace is seen as a boon for other reasons. “We hire employees with diverse backgrounds,” says Dan Mattock, Securis’ EVP of Sales. “We also live in a very diverse region in Northern Virginia.
If a manager or business owner shares a background or home country with some of our employees, that’s a connection that you just can’t get any other way – it’s deep and profound and as long as the job goes well, then we become their preferred vendor moving forward.”
Securis celebrates the diversity and international makeup of its employees every day. In addition to cultural diversity, Securis has a long-time commitment to supporting people with disabilities in the workforce. Securis’ program teaches special ed students IT Recycling and Data Destruction. Recently, the company was able to expand training for disabled HS students. Students with special needs gain real-world work experience at Securis through a long-standing program with local Chantilly High School, in Fairfax County, Virginia.
In addition to Securis’ program for local high school students, the company is also committed to empowering workers with disabilities through an organization called Service Source.
Interested in joining a company that values diversity where you can thrive as both an individual and as a part of a team? Check out Securis’ current job openings and see if anything fits you and your career goals.
For businesses, when times are tough, they look for every income stream possible. When times are booming, smart businesses continue to look for every opportunity to increase revenue. Lessons learned during difficult times can often transfer over to better times and provide a necessary cushion during the next downturn. Recycling technology assets should be considered a business revenue stream.
One such practice every business should adopt is recycling its outdated and obsolete electronic equipment. Electronics recycling is the better choice for the environment. There’s also money that businesses can reap from their old machines. Even when times are good, why wouldn’t a business recycle old electronics and receive money for technology assets?
“Most employees don’t think about what happens to their old electronics,” says Laura Ware, Vice President of Enterprise Sales at Securis. “There’s no blue bin under their desk to toss old laptops in. If companies aren’t recycling their old equipment, they’re missing an opportunity.”
According to a recent report by the United Nations, only about 17% of e-waste is recycled annually. That waste includes toxins and heavy metals that are major pollutants. It also includes valuable, reusable resources such as gold, glass, copper, and silver. In fact, studies suggest that $60 million in gold and silver is thrown out with old cell phones every year.
“What’s staggering to think about,” Laura continues, “is how much money is thrown away when companies don’t recycle e-waste. If businesses baked in the nominal costs of recycling equipment, they could add a nice cushion to their bottom line.”
Businesses and governments that practice IT recycling continues to grow, but there’s plenty of room to improve. There is tremendous room for growth and environmental stewardship on the corporate and government levels.
The EPA’s Life Cycle Stages of Electronics. Securis can be your trusted partner for collection, reuse/refurbishing, and recycling.
Looking to start recycling your company’s old machines? Make sure you partner with a reputable, certified e-waste recycling partner like Securis. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, certified recyclers, “have demonstrated to accredited, independent third-party auditors that they continually meet specific high environmental standards and safely manage used electronics.”
Securis holds multiple certifications from multiple independent organizations. Organizations concerned about the environment will benefit from choosing Securis for their data destruction and e-waste recycling program. Not only does nothing end up in a landfill, companies and government agencies and contractors make money from old IT assets.
When purchasing a new computer, phone, and other electronics, most of us don’t think about where the materials needed to produce them come from. The same is true regarding where our retired e-waste goes once it’s obsolete or replaced with newer technology. The climate is shifting as we’re faced with a growing number of electronic waste in landfills. Because of environmental awareness, we’re seeing a global shift from a linear model of production to a circular model. This is especially important in electronics recycling. Securis has long practiced the circular economy of e-waste.
Linear vs circular economy comparison from-waste recycling viewpoint
“If people think about where their goods come from and where they end up, they’re probably thinking about the old, linear model,” says Laura Ware, Enterprise Sales and Sustainability Officer at Securis. “The linear model is, basically, ‘take, make, take, break, and toss.’ Companies take the resources they need to make a product, the customer takes the product and uses it until it breaks, and then tosses it where it ends up in a landfill. Electronics recycling is so important because it means that we’re repurposing and reusing as much raw material as we possibly can.”
The idea of a circular economy dates back to the late 1960s but gained widespread popularity in the early 2000s with the publication of the book “Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things” by William McDonough and Michael Braungart. The book analyzes the ways in which production and manufacturing can upcycle rather than downcycle goods to ensure that resources are continually be reused and refreshed.
Concept of circular economy with businessman
Securis’ commitment to generate zero waste and ensure nothing ends up in a landfill is putting a circular economy model into daily business practices. Securis has been at the forefront of the circular economy before it was a known term. “While I’ve only been with Securis for a few months,” Laura says, “Jeremy Farber (Founder and President) started the business in the early 2000s before conservation and sustainability were boardroom buzzwords. Today, every business is looking for ways to do better for the environment. We’re here to help them do that.”
Whether or not it’s data destruction and shredding or electronic waste recycling, Securis has built its business – and its reputation – on delivering exceptional results for its customers while adhering to strict environmental guidelines and certification mandates, such as those given by R2 and other industry governors.
“I love when customers have that ‘A-HA! moment,” says Laura. It’s when they realize that working with us is a win-win scenario. It’s better for the environment, it’s better for the bottom line, and it can put money in your pocket. It shows you that the circular economy really is made up of virtuous cycles with Securis right in the middle of it.”
Solid State Drives (SSDs) are a vital component of the machines we rely on. SSDs are essential to the operation of desktop computers, laptops, and servers. When the time comes to dispose of old equipment through data destruction, how the SSD is handled is one of the most important aspects of the process.
There are several different types of solid state drives. How these drives are shredded and disposed of varies based on what type of SSD it is. Securis’ team knows how to safely and effectively dispose of all types of SSDs and guarantees the physical destruction of each disk drive.
Essentially, there are three different types of solid state drives:
Laptops tend to be the most straightforward to dispose of, while servers tend to be the most difficult. Between the two are desktop computer SSDs. Each type of drive has its own set of challenges and steps that must be followed to ensure the proper destruction of the SSD.
“We have the ability to shred each type of SSD,” says Nabil Frangieh, Service Manager at Securis. “Knowing which drives we’re dealing with ensures the customer gets an accurate estimate for what their job will cost. Servers are more labor-intensive than laptop drives, and are therefore more expensive to destroy.”
“When it comes to destroying SSDs, the least labor-intensive are laptop SSDs,” says Nabil. “With these, you simply open the machine and they come right out. We can then take the entire drive and shred it.”
Laptops are designed to be small, light, and portable. One way to eliminate both weight and size is to use simplified drives. Unlike desktops and servers, laptop SSDs are designed to be light and compact – giving users portable, powerful laptops. The downside to this efficiency is that SSDs in laptops tend to be more exposed and at risk of damage.
“Most higher-end laptops have an aluminum coating which helps to protect the SSD somewhat. Still, one accidental laptop drop and the SSD could be damaged.” Even with the added risk and typically smaller size, laptop SSDs are comparable to other types of solid state drives in terms of memory and storage.
“For businesses, four years is about the limit for desktop computers,” Nabil says. “At that time, you’ll notice drags, capacity issues, and an inability to work on multiple projects at once.” When it’s time to upgrade or recycle, destroying SSDs from desktop computers requires a bit more effort than a laptop’s SSD to destroy.
“You can’t simply pop out a desktop computer SSD and shred it,” continued Nabil. The aluminum casing is designed to protect the SSD and will damage the shredder, which adds a step to destroying the drive. First, the SSD and its casing are removed, and then we remove the drive from its aluminum casing in order to shred it. Given the added step, the process takes longer and requires more manpower, which means that it’s a bit more expensive to physically destroy them.”
Like desktops, server SSDs are housed in a protective aluminum casing. Given the demands and needs placed on them, server SSDs may also be enclosed in additional layers of casing. In that case, labor and time are higher due to the extra step of taking the SSD casing out of its housing.
“It’s about security and protection of a machine’s data and its memory capacity,” Nabil explains. “Server SSDs are designed to withstand a lot. We’re experts in getting through the protective layers so our clients can have the data on their server solid state drives destroyed safely, securely, and efficiently, even with these built-in protections.”
Knowing which SSDs a client needs destroyed helps everyone involved with electronic recycling and data destruction. Securis prides itself on its accuracy and ability to work with clients on all of their end-of-life electronics needs.
To find out how Securis can help your business, let us provide you with a free quote and let us know how you can make the most out of your old machines – whether they need to be recycled or destroyed.