Fresno, California-based ERI, a leading electronics recycler and cybersecurity-focused hardware destruction company, has become the recycling industry’s first company to adopt the Seattle-based Basel Action Network’s (BAN’s) new EarthEye tracking system.
EarthEye is designed to offer real-time logistics monitoring to government agencies and businesses concerned about the possibility of data-security breaches arising from data theft from discarded equipment; unauthorized exports to substandard recycling operations in developing countries; and brand damage from lack of accountability and downstream due diligence. Without having to go anywhere, EarthEye in effect provides a downstream performance audit every 24 hours, BAN says.
"We’re proud to welcome ERI as the first recycling industry organization to demonstrate its leadership by pioneering the use of this groundbreaking due-diligence technology," says BAN executive director and founder Jim Puckett.
"In this day and age, really bad things can happen if you don't know precisely where your old electronics end up," he continues. "Our tracking studies have shown that there are just too many risks and too many so-called recyclers willing to take them. It is vital therefore that any company verify vendor promises."
Industry investigations have shown that 48 percent of hard disks and solid-state drives found in used computers sold online contain private residual data, BAN says. The organization says its own studies have shown that 40 percent of the tracked devices given to electronics recyclers were sent offshore to developing countries rather than being recycled in the United States as claimed by the contracted recyclers.
BAN says its tracking techniques have led to federal indictments, convictions and prosecutions for fraud and environmental crimes, including by companies, such as Diversified Recycling in Georgia, Executive Recycling in Colorado, Intercon Solutions in Illinois and Total Reclaim in Washington, once used by many Fortune 500 companies.
The organization says it developed EarthEye because traditional audits, inspections and diligent compliance officers alone cannot always prevent bad actors from jeopardizing a company's reputation and resources.
"BAN’s tracking systems to date have repeatedly proven to be well-ahead of the curve and genuine game changers in the ITAD (information technology asset disposition) industry," says Aaron Blum, ERI co-founder, chief operating officer and chief compliance officer. "With EarthEye, we will be able to show our customers, the industry and the world that we are always leaders in terms of innovation, responsibility and transparency—and that we are once again on the cutting edge of downstream due diligence, environmental stewardship and data security."
Blum continues, "As we continue to pioneer new technologies and solutions into 2019 and beyond, it is cutting-edge partnerships like what we have established with BAN that have kept us the world leader in electronic recycling, ITAD and hardware data destruction."