Wiping Data Properly from Mobile Devices Protects Customer Data

Today’s employees are driven to do their jobs to the best of their abilities, from wherever and on whatever device. Conversely, businesses are keen to equip employees with the IT equipment to perform at optimal levels of efficiency and productivity. As a result, employees are doing one of two things – they’re either using their personal mobile devices or company-issued mobile devices for work-related activities. And as a 2014 IDG survey of European companies found, 36 percent had a formal BYOD policy, 23 percent planned to create one and 41 percent didn’t have any plans in the next 18 months. Whatever the scenario, the use of mobile devices is inevitable in the enterprise and the security risks that could result if data isn’t adequately wiped before these devices are resold can have devastating consequences for both employees and their employers.

Teqcycle Solutions GmbH, together with Deutsche Telekom, helps to facilitate corporate mobile take-back programs, as well as mobile device refurbishment, remarketing and recycling, using a network of globally recognised service providers who deploy the Teqcycle software solutions.

Highlights:

  • 36% of consumers recycle, sell, donate or trade in mobile devices every 2-3 years*
  • 35% of used mobile devices contain residual data after resale**
  • 42.8 million security incidents were detected in 2014***
* Blancco, It’s Complicated: Mobile Frustrations & Churn Study, August 2015
** Blancco & Kroll Ontrack, Privacy for Sale: A Data Security Study, October 2015
*** PwC 2015 Global State of Information Security Report

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Challenge

As our recent global study found, 35 percent of consumers recycle, sell, donate or trade in their mobile devices every two to three years and another 17 percent do so even more frequently – either every year or when a new device model is launched. Estimates show the number of smartphones and tablets in the workplace as exceeding one billion. As our IT Security Consultant, Eric Schoeniger, recently explained in a blog post, “Virtually all those devices carry mission-cri cal data, from customer information to intellectual property. And all will reach end of life, at which time they’ll be resold, recycled or discarded.”

However, as so many studies have found, attempting to delete data doesn’t necessarily mean the data has been completely removed. In our latest global data security study with Kroll Ontrack, our team found varying amounts and types of residual data still remaining on used mobile devices, hard disk drives and solid state drives sold online at Amazon, eBay and Gazelle.com. Even more alarming was our team’s ability to retrieve thousands of leftover emails, call logs, texts/SMS/ IMs, photos and videos from 35 percent of the used mobile devices that contained residual data. Knowing how dangerous this scenario is for its customers and their employees, Teqcycle Solutions needed to find a solution that was capable of removing data completely and permanently from mobile devices and, beyond that, would prepare it to comply with the new EU GDPR legislation.

teqcycle case study
“Companies who err on the side of caution and want to protect unwanted recovery of sensitive data after reselling or disposing of mobile devices can’t dismiss the importance of professional data deletion services.”

– Dirk Ulrich, Managing Partner, Teqcycle Solutions GmbH

Strategy

Using Blancco Mobile Device Eraser, Teqcycle Solutions was able to quickly and effectively wipe data permanently from up to 1,000 mobile devices in a single day. These devices varied across operating systems, manufacturers and models. Additionally, the company was required to produce proof of erasure to its clients to verify that sensitive data had been irrevocably removed and destroyed from the devices before they were remarketed. This is where Blancco Management Console came into excellent use by providing a centralized point of view of all data erasure licenses and 100% certified reporting that could be presented to Supervisory Authorities for proof that all data has been removed properly and in accordance with regulations.


As a Result...

 

Erased data from 1,000 mobile devices in a single day

Processed 1,000 mobile devices for resale per day

Mitigated risk of high-value data leaks

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Why Blancco

As the de facto standard in data erasure, Blancco provides thousands of organizations with an absolute line of defense against costly security breaches, as well as verification of regulatory compliance through a 100% tamper-proof audit trail. Our data erasure solutions have been tested, certified, approved and recommended by 18 governing bodies around the world. No other security firm can boast this level of compliance with the most rigorous requirements set by government agencies, legal authorities and independent testing laboratories.

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