Retailers gather a wealth of personal data from their customers, much of which lives in electronic devices. While handling electronic assets with customer data is an increasing concern for e-commerce businesses, it’s especially challenging for brick and mortar retailers, which have a number of devices that store personal information. Proper handling of this data is critical; consumers expect their private data to be used responsibly, and any violations can erode trust in a company, sending both new and prospective customers elsewhere. Moreover, retailers have a legal obligation to adhere to data privacy regulations. In Canada, the retail industry is governed by specific laws that determine how data is collected and managed, including the Personal Information Protection and Electronics Documents Act (PIPEDA).
To complicate matters further, many retailers must also comply with province-based privacy laws. Quebec, for instance, made significant changes to their privacy law in September 2021 concerning data portability, transfer, and consent for retailers within the province. The enforcement framework has been strengthened as well, and potential financial penalties for violations are high.
To ensure compliance with these stringent regulations, retailers must establish sound data destruction practices for their unwanted devices. As physical stores have endeavored to keep pace in the Digital Age, the number of electronics used by retailers has increased. While traditional point of sale (POS) equipment, receipt printers, and credit card machines are still widely used, there are also many more laptops, tablets, and kiosks in storefronts today. All of these devices can contain personal details about customers, including general profiles and shopping activities.
Fortunately, Quantum can help mitigate the risks that come with managing sensitive customer data and ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements during equipment destruction. Here’s a closer look at how our services benefit the retail sector.
Stringent Data Security Measures
When you partner with Quantum, the security of your retail data is ensured from the moment of pickup. Whether we’re shredding devices onsite with our mobile truck or transporting assets to our facility for data destruction, every step of the process is rigorously planned and controlled to ensure your sensitive data never gets into the wrong hands.
At your retail store or headquarters, our background-checked team members will scan and log device serial numbers to provide proof of pickup. During transportation, our trucks are always attended, and GPS tracking is in effect the entire time. We maintain a closed-loop chain of custody, and you’ll be able to track the location of your assets at all time using a convenient customer portal. We also offer certificates of destruction for your records. Quantum is NAID AAA certified — the highest level of data destruction certification available.
We also understand the unique challenges retailers face and have first-hand knowledge and experience working with the industry. For instance, we’ve helped retailers navigate the complexities of PCI DSS compliance, a data security regulation for the payment card industry and one of the most stringent privacy measures the industry faces. Quantum handles the destruction of credit card processing machines, along with other devices that may contain sensitive customer data, such as POS cash registers and tablets.
Moreover, because Quantum is not only an ITAD company but also an electronics recycler, any parts of your devices that can be recycled will also be processed by our team. Other ITAD companies that don’t handle the recycling side may ship your devices elsewhere, introducing security risks and potentially leaving your company at risk for data breaches and violations.
Dependable Equipment Destruction
The Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada requires retail companies to handle personal information according to strict measures. Specifically, personal data-bearing devices cannot simply be thrown away. Quantum offers two secure methods for compliant data destruction:
- Physical destruction (including hard drive shredding)
- Erasure via overwriting with advanced software
No matter which option you choose, you can rest assured that your end-of-life assets will be securely managed when you partner with Quantum.
Environmentally Responsible Options
In Canada, there are more than 80 stewardship programs that apply to retailers. One area in particular that continues to be a challenge for both this sector and business as a whole is e-waste. In 2020, the world reached a total electronic waste volume of 53.6 million metric tonnes, just 17.4% of which was recycled.
In addition to ensuring the security of your customer data, Quantum is an R2-certified reuse and recycling partner. With a range of solutions to repurpose and recycle the components in retailers’ electronic waste, we can aid you in the pursuit of minimizing your company’s carbon footprint.
Whether you have ITAD concerns, recycling needs, or both, turn to Quantum for customized solutions that fit your retail company. As a one-stop shop for all retail equipment disposition needs, we’ll meet your company’s specific needs while minimizing risk and helping you meet compliance requirements.