We work with customers to dispose of and recycle technology.

Maxxum Inc. Names Tom Pritzker President

September 23, 2016

Maxxum New President

Maxxum Inc. is thrilled to announce the hiring of Tom Pritzker as its new President.

Tom Pritzker | New President of Maxxum

Pritzker brings over 25 years of executive experience with high-growth service companies to his role as President of Maxxum. Having served in a variety of senior general management roles, Pritzker has also led the sales, marketing, communications and client relationship management functions of several companies that provide business services and technology solutions to a wide variety of clients, making him an ideal fit to lead our fast-growing technology asset disposal and deployment company. His role at Maxxum will include general management, corporate strategy and leading sales and marketing teams.
“Tom has a long and successful history as a senior executive and we’re lucky to be able to bring him in as our President,” said Maxxum CEO Rich Woodward. “He brings the expertise and experience we are looking for to lead and further develop our corporate strategy and our sales and marketing teams.”

Maxxum has developed a national footprint providing technology planning, asset procurement, implementation, support, and end-of-life management services including data sanitization, equipment destruction, remarketing and recycling. With a risk mitigation focus, Maxxum provides secure data destruction services and detailed, comprehensive and compliant processes to protect clients from data privacy and environmental breaches. Maxxum specializes in industries where data security is highly valued: insurance, health care, medical device, financial services and education. Pritzker’s varied executive roles and industry experience complements Maxxum’s diverse client base.

“I have been driven by the challenge of leading and transforming fast-growing, innovative entrepreneurial service companies into highly professional, results-oriented organizations”, said Pritzker. “I think my history in sales management, operations and marketing strategy will lend itself greatly to a fast-growing company in the emerging industry where Maxxum resides.”

Maxxum is a Minnesota-based technology asset services firm specializing in risk mitigation through the delivery of superior data sanitization and equipment remarketing, recycling and destruction services to leading corporations around the country. We look forward to continued growth and we’re excited to have Tom on board as our new President!

Panama Papers are Biggest Data Leak Yet

April 11, 2016

Panama Papers

If cyber hackers can unearth the financial secrets of Russian President Vladimir Putin, do you really think your company is safe from the same thing?

Panama Papers: “History’s Biggest Data Leak”

News of the “Panama Papers” is filling newspapers and websites across the globe this week, in what The Guardian is calling, “History’s biggest data leak”.

Hackers have unearthed the financial secrets of some of the world’s most powerful people, detailing the secrets of how many international politicians, business leaders and celebrities have used the Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca, the fourth-largest offshore law firm in the world, unseemly financial transactions.

The Panama Papers are 11.5 million documents taken from the files of Mossack Fonseca by an unnamed source and turned over to a German newspaper. Information from this leaked data continues to spill out and the repercussions already include the prime minister of Iceland resigning on April 5, the president of Transparency Chile, a branch of a global anti-corruption group, stepping down on April 4, and the CEO of large Austrian bank resigning on April 7.

Others named involved in the massive data breach were the presidents of Argentina and the Ukraine, the prime minister of Pakistan, a king from Saudi Arabia, the former emir of Qatar, and Argentine soccer star Lionel Messi. A Russian cellist who’s a close confidant of Putin has also been named in the documents.

As the fallout from this massive data leak continues to reverberate literally around the world, it’s a great reminder that every company is at risk of a data breach. If the world’s richest and most powerful people can have their most confidential information hacked, cyber hackers can seemingly get anywhere they set their minds too.

Is your company safe?

While up to nearly half of all organizations experienced a data breach in the last year, a recent report by AIIM (Association for Information and Image Management) showed that a quarter of respondents felt that their senior managers did not take the risks of data privacy breaches seriously.

This report comes on the heels of a 2015 IBM survey of more than 700 C-level executives, almost three-quarters of CEOs believed that ‘rogue individuals’ as the largest threat to organizations—the truth is 80% of cyber attacks are led by highly organized crime rings.

Too many C-level leaders have their hand in the sand and move forward with an “It won’t happen to us” mentality.

Protect your company and be proactive. Your data is everywhere these days—on hard drives and paper at the office, with volumes of information on laptops that move in and out of the office, on mobile devices and cloud storage—these are all entities that need to be managed from the C-level on down.

IBM’s study revealed that almost two-thirds of C-level executives in marketing, human resources and finance departments acknowledge they are not actively engaged in cyber security strategy and execution. Cyber security is at a point now where it simply has to go beyond the IT department. Criminals are targeting any department where personally identifiable and financial information resides.

Senior managers have to commit to information security before an organization can fully adopt a culture of security. Employees will follow the example set by their managers.

The Panama Papers put another spotlight on cyber security. Even the most rich and powerful are at risk.

 

Maxxum Insured by Downstream Data Coverage

March 8, 2016

Downstream Data Coverage

Maxxum has always taken our responsibilities as a secure data destruction service provider very seriously. It’s why we’re proud to be AAA NAID certified—a program that establishes standards for secure data and equipment destruction processes.

These NAID (National Association for Information Destruction) standards include:

  • Operational Security
  • Employee Hiring and Screening
  • Audited by Independent 3rd Party
  • Documented Process
  • Data Destruction Insurance (best practices)

Maxxum passed a strict audit to become NAID AAA certified and has agreed to not only be recertified every year, but must pass random audits during the course of the year.

Working with an asset disposal company that is NAID AAA certified should first and foremost bring peace of mind to an organization. With data breaches and information theft making headlines far too often, it’s a HUGE relief for companies to partner with an organization like Maxxum, who will make sure they receive documented transfer of custody and indemnification from their technology assets.

Ensuring Data Security One Step Further with Downstream Data Coverage

Maxxum is now taking that piece of mind one step further for their customers as a “best practices” initiative. We’re now insured by Downstream Data Coverage, the only professional liability coverage developed specifically by NAID for data destruction services.

From the Downstream Data Coverage website:

“Data-related service providers obtain professional liability insurance to protect themselves and to ensure they can cover their financial liabilities to their clients.  When a service provider purchases an inadequate professional liability policy, they not only put themselves at risk, they also leave their customer exposed.  Downstream Data Coverage seeks to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

This specialized policy addresses many of the shortcomings of standard professional liability coverage that leave service providers and their customers at risk.

Downstream Data Coverage is only available to service providers that are subject to the routine announced and unannounced audits of NAID AAA certification. This means that not only is the service protecting the customer with quality professional liability insurance, the service provider is also operating under the scrutiny of outside auditors trained specifically for that purpose.

Too many technology asset destruction service providers rely on off-the-shelf professional liability coverage because they had no other alternatives. Many times that coverage still leaves companies without the full coverage they seek.

Many customers remain at risk, because their service provider would not be able to effectively cover their liability. At Maxxum, we are proud to ensure our processes meet the high standards needed for proper technology asset disposal and data destruction; with Downstream Data Coverage, we’ve just taken it one step further.

Cyber Crime Continues to Rise

February 11, 2016

Cyber Crime Continues to Rise

If you’ve picked up a newspaper or watched the news on television over the last five years, you’re probably aware that identity theft is one of the fastest rising crimes in the United States. It was probably bound to happen, as more and more of our lives, including our financial transactions, are done digitally, criminals have followed close behind, and cyber crime is increasing dramatically. So you knew that, but did you know that identity theft now costs Americans nearly twice as much as property theft? In a recent report the U.S. Bureau of Justice statistics found that total losses attributed to identity theft in 2012 were $24.6 billion, compared to $13.9 billion for property theft crimes. One would imagine that those numbers are only going to rise over the next decade.

Cyber Crime – is there an End in Sight?

There are plenty of studies that show that the crime rate is falling in the U.S., but many of those studies can be construed as inaccurate, as there still isn’t a great way of measuring cyber crime. An article from last year in phys.org had the following two quotes:

“Crime reporting has to be updated for the cyber-era,” said researcher and dean of the UAlbany School of Criminal Justice Alan Lizotte. “Property crime that remains underreported because it’s online crime shapes our response to it, particularly the response of law enforcement—what’s hidden stays hidden, yet continues to be a real, growing threat.”

“Recent data breaches targeting major US retailers and, more disturbingly perhaps, health-care providers, are evidence that we’ve reached a new frontier in criminal behavior,” said UAlbany criminal justice school researcher Giza Lopes. “Crime control is far from keeping up—a deficit that spans from inadequate measurement to jurisdictional inability to deal with a problem that spills over physical and national boundaries.”

Clearly cyber crime is on the rise and the ways to keep track of it haven’t quite caught up yet. What this means for organizations however, is that it’s pretty obvious that the need for data security is more important than ever. Maxxum’s recent research study revealed that over 40 percent of companies sometimes use disposal methods outside of a professional technology disposal service—including equipment donations and giving equipment to employees.

There’s certainly nothing wrong with donating or gifting old technology, but we can’t stress enough how important it is to have that technology wiped clean of information beforehand. Simply deleting material isn’t nearly enough. Drives need to be sanitized and wiped clean to insure that your sensitive information isn’t leaving your building in your old technology assets.

Organizations should make sure they receive documented transfer of custody and indemnification from their technology asset disposal company (we’ve outlined a few other key things to expect from a technology asset disposal company for reference here).

At Maxxum, we’re committed to smart, strategic partnerships with our clients. We stay up-to-date on laws and regulations regarding data privacy and environmental responsibility. We develop and support industry best practices in compliance, remarketing, recycling and reporting.

Maxxum Conducts Tech Disposal Research Study

February 3, 2016

tech disposal research study

Maxxum recently conducted a tech disposal research study with a simple objective in mind: We wanted to understand your world and how we can make technology disposal easier and safer given the challenges you face in today’s digital environment.

The overriding result of this study revealed that organizations still engage in risky technology disposal behavior, even as data breaches continue to increase in frequency and severity. We were quite happy to find that Maxxum customers rate our services more positively as compared to other technology companies, especially in the key areas of recycling, security, and compliance— which are cited as the most meaningful to organizations.

In this ever-evolving digital age it’s increasingly important to dispose of technology assets using a safe and compliant program. At Maxxum, we’re committed to helping you retire your technology in a documented, secure, and sustainable way.

Tech Disposal Research Proves the Importance of Proper Asset Disposal

Our tech disposal research study gathered responses from highly regulated/risk adverse organizations including health care, insurance, medical device MFG, financial services and education.

The most alarming data uncovered from our research is that 40 percent of respondents stated that they use disposal methods outside of a professional tech disposal service, including equipment donations and giving away old computers, monitors, etc. to employees. Just because your office is done with a computer, that doesn’t mean the secure information it holds isn’t still available.

We stress to our clients and say elsewhere here on our website: You may be vulnerable to legal ramifications if you don’t dispose of your data and drive assets properly. If your sensitive data leaks, you’ll have to answer to the law and your customers.

As one might expect, the most important elements for organizations, the key drivers, are: process and documents, recycling and reuse and security at destination. We’re happy to report that Maxxum customers ranked our service particularly high in those three areas versus other companies.

To see more of the tech disposal research study survey results, contact us for a copy of our white paper.

4 Questions to Ask Your Technology Disposal Company

November 3, 2015

technology disposal company

When you’re ready to dispose of your old technology assets, do so with the support and guidance of people whose job it is to stay on top of the ever-evolving regulatory and security requirements: a certified compliant and dependable technology disposal company.

4 Things You Need to Know About Your Technology Disposal Company

We’ve outlined a few questions to ask your technology disposal company:

1. Are they certified for data destruction and environmental compliance?

With so many stories about data breaches and information leaks dominating the news over the last few years, most organizations are a little spooked about how they’re disposing of their used technology assets.

You may be vulnerable to legal ramifications if you don’t dispose of your data and drive assets properly. If your sensitive data leaks, you’ll have to answer to the law and your customers. Financial penalties can be quite harsh, and a tarnished reputation can have long-term ramifications.

Environmental compliance laws have become far more strict over the last decade, and getting hit with environmental penalties is a bad “look” for any organization. Now more than ever, it’s important to vet a technology asset disposal company to ensure they have industry certifications for both security and environmental compliance.

2. Do they understand the resale market?

Your technology asset disposal company should know the resale market inside and out in order for your organization to get the best return on the equipment it’s retiring.

PCs, laptops, and servers that are less than three to four years old retain value, even if they’re no longer of use to your company. If you’re ready to dispose of your technology assets, why not recover that value? Remarketing your technology assets is an opportunity to recoup some of the initial investment or cover some or all of the disposal costs.

Your technology asset disposal company should understand price trends on the resale market and help your organization plan ahead and determine when your assets will turn from revenue generators to cost creators. They should help you plan to refresh your technology cycles to ensure that you get the optimum value on your old equipment.

3. How do they document data destruction and disposal?

Find out from any potential provider how they document their full process. There are too many factors along the way during the disposal process that could find your organization liable for mistakes made by your provider.

Disposing of data can have security, financial, and software asset management implications. Proper documentation can shield your company from financial and legal penalties. You should be provided with a Certificate of Data Destruction and a detailed inventory report, as well as a report to show the environmental impact that your responsible recycling is having.

4. Can they serve all of your locations?

Technology asset disposal can be a pretty complicated matter. From drive sanitization to environmental compliance, there are numerous reasons to rely on a proven and trusted technology disposal company.

Don’t forget to ask about logistics. Your vendor has to have experience that allows them to serve all of your sites and the logistical capability to properly handle all of your assets.

If you have multiple locations, make sure you hire a disposal company that can handle your work load and that understands the different regulations that might be in play in each of your locations.

 

The Rising Cost of Data Breach

October 28, 2015

cost of a data breach

IBM and the Poneman Institute released a global study in January that said the average total cost of a data breach has increased 23 percent in the last two years, up to $3.79 million.

The same study showed that the average cost paid by organizations for each lost or stolen record containing confidential information rose from $145 in 2014 to $154 in 2015. The largest increase was seen in the retail industry, where the average cost increased from $105 in 2013 to $165 in 2014.

The Cost of a Data Breach is Increasing

As today’s world becomes more and more digital, with so much sensitive data stored on drives of all sorts, optical media, cell phones, and various other forms of office equipment, there’s every reason to believe that the cost of a data breach is only going to rise over the next several years.

It’s important to know that just because a piece of technology no longer works, doesn’t mean that the information on it is no longer accessible. In fact, without destruction, most of it is pretty easily retrieved by someone who knows what they’re doing.

In 2003 researchers at MIT were able to recover 92.4 percent of sensitive information from 158 used hard drives. That sensitive information included not only corporate information, but names and contact information, emails, credit card numbers, social security numbers and medical records.

Security measures have improved dramatically since MIT’s study, and organizations have embraced the value of hiring Technology Asset Disposal Companies. While security has improved, so have hackers and data thieves. If you think that black markets where stolen information is sold only exist on TV shows and in the movies, you’ve got your head in the sand.

The following numbers should scare you a little bit: 80 percent of corporate desktops and laptops contain sensitive data. When it comes to IT personnel, only 34 percent have a secure process for hard drive destruction.

There’s far too much on the line, both monetarily and legally, for organizations not to hire experts to dispose of their technology assets when the time comes to refresh or upgrade. Avoid the rising costs of any kind of information breach by hiring an expert and trustworthy data destruction organization.

15 Million T-Mobile Customers’ Data Exposed | T-Mobile Data Breach in 2015

October 23, 2015

t-mobile data breach

On October 1, it was announced that approximately 15 million T-Mobile customers were impacted by a T-Mobile data breach at credit agency Experian PLC, the latest major leak of confidential data to hit corporate America.

The exposed data included names, addresses, birth dates and encrypted Social Security numbers, driver’s license or passport numbers for customers who might have applied for T-Mobile cell service between Sept. 1, 2013 and Sept. 16, 2015.

T-Mobile said the T-Mobile data breach was discovered on September 15 and included information on millions of their subscribers, former customers and people who applied for service or device financing at the wireless carrier over the last two years.

“Obviously I am incredibly angry about this data breach and we will institute a thorough review of our relationship with Experian,” T-Mobile CEO John Legere said. “I take our customer and prospective customer privacy VERY seriously.”

Experian is one of the three major American credit bureaus, along with Equifax and TransUnion, that affect, if not touch every American with a credit card or cell phone.

There is no evidence yet that any breached information has been inappropriately used and Experian is notifying the individuals who may have been affected. They are also offering free credit monitoring and identity resolution services for two years to affected customers.

Hackers typically put this type of information up for sale on black markets, where large data bases of information are aggregated and sold to identity thieves. A stolen identity can lead to stolen tax refunds, ruined credit and worse.

T-Mobile is in the process of reaching out to people who may be impacted by the T-Mobile data breach.

Here are four steps to take if you are ever afraid your personal data has been breached. All four steps can be done by calling each of the three credit bureaus (Experian: 1-888-397-3742, Equifax: 1-800-525-6285, and TransUnion: 1-800-680-7289).

  1. Monitor your credit reports. You are entitled to one free credit report every 12 months from each of the three credit bureaus.
  2. Consider placing a “fraud alert” with each of the three credit bureaus. An alert doesn’t block potential new credit, but places a comment on your history. Creditors should contact you prior to opening a new account.
  3. Consider placing a “security freeze” with each of the three credit bureaus to prohibit the release of any information from your reports. A security freeze can help prevent identity theft since most businesses won’t open credit accounts without checking a consumer’s credit history first.
  4. Beware of unsolicited calls or emails offering credit monitoring or identity theft services. Never provide your Social Security number, credit card numbers, or other personal information in response to unsolicited emails or calls.

Where Does Your E-Waste End Up?

October 8, 2015

e-waste

50 million tons of e-waste is dumped into landfills worldwide every year.

That’s a huge number, but it only represents two percent of what is dumped each year. That two percent of e-waste, however, makes up 70 percent of the toxic waste in landfills. According to Popular Science, when electronics start to break down, they release the metals and chemicals inside them, including lead, which has been linked to a myriad of health issues.

E-Waste: What You Can Do About It

It’s obvious that more and more organizations are in need of a technology asset disposal company that responsibly recycles their technology. Maxxum is an industry leader in technology asset disposal because we won’t let our clients be compromised.

In fact, Maxxum has a zero landfill policy. We’re committed to responsible, domestic recycling of technology assets — in the best interest of the environment and your business.

At Maxxum, we believe that retiring technology assets shouldn’t mean risking an environmental breach. We’re committed to smart, strategic partnerships with our clients. We stay up-to-date on laws and regulations regarding environmental responsibility. We develop and support industry best practices in compliance, recycling and reporting.

In order to track what happens to your recycled technology from start to finish, Maxxum executes the following for every client:

  • Provides a Certificate of Electronic Equipment Destruction (CEED) that includes serial number, type, date, and our downstream recycle partner
  • Thoroughly vets our downstream recycling partners for compliance with our strict standards
  • Provides current copies of EPA licenses for all recycling partners
  • Reduces end-of-life assets to their smallest component parts and material types
  • Engages domestic recycling partners who utilize the most eco-friendly processes

It’s this attention to detail and accountability that makes Maxxum a leader in the field.

Data Protection | Dont’ Let Your Data Fall Into the Wrong Hands

October 1, 2015

data protection

Class-action lawsuits, crippling financial penalties, tarnished reputations and even jail time are some of the repercussions that can stem from information falling into the wrong hands and the lack of data protection.

If you think your organization is immune to a data breach, you’re wrong.

Early next year the movie, Snowden, will be released, detailing the story of Edward Snowden, an American computer professional who leaked classified information from the National Security Agency (NSA) to the British daily newspaper, The Guardian, in 2013.

If the NSA can be compromised, that probably means every organization has some type of vulnerability. There are, however, precautions that can be taken.

One particular point of vulnerability for every organization is when they refresh their technology assets. Just because new technology has entered the building, that doesn’t mean that you’re no longer responsible for the data on the technology that is being disposed of.

The best way to ensure that your data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands is to hire a trustworthy, dependable Technology Asset Disposal firm like Maxxum.

Data Protection Made Easy

Demand certified drive sanitization and destruction. Maxxum creates a smart, strategic partnership with each client. We will help your organization build a comprehensive and cost-effective risk-management program. This program eliminates potential data and environmental breaches and offers a secure, documented chain of custody that mitigates liability.

Maxxum utilizes best practices for sanitization of digitally stored information, meeting the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) standard, also adopted by the Department of Defense.

Our comprehensive documentation and certification includes:

  • Asset receipt reporting provided by Maxxum’s technology center
  • Certification of data destruction by serial number of the host machine and drives
  • Drive sanitization date and method used

If you need physical destruction of your drives to ensure data protection, Maxxum can help. We offer certified and documented physical destruction that shields you and your company.

Technology breaches are happening to organizations big and small. If you’re not being diligent about where your data ends up, it can fall into the wrong hands. Ensure data protection and turn your used technology over to Maxxum; it will be disposed of properly.