Disposal of IT equipment IT and Library Services

Disposal of IT, AV and Digital Equipment supplied by the University of Greenwich

Disposal of this type of equipment is governed by the WEEE directive and the University has clear guidelines that must be followed.

Equipment is disposed of by the approved University service provider, Computer Disposals Ltd (CDL), who are contracted by the Facilities Management Office to destroy disks, etc. and supply regular Asset Reports and data erase certificates about the work carried out.

You can make enquiries or get advice regarding the collection and disposal of waste from the Campus FM Helpdesk.

Is Data Destroyed Efficiently?

With regard to computer hard disks the following generally applies:

  • Disks of size equal to or less than 20Gb are crushed using a CESG approved hard disk crusher –no data erase certificate provided but an asset report is created and sent to FM.
  • Disks of size greater than 20Gb are wiped using CESG approved overwriting software; if this is not successful then the disk is shredded – a full report is produced for FM indicating model, serial number and time this work was carried out.
  • Asset reports and data erase certificates are sent to FM on a regular basis; FM keep these for a defined period. If you require a copy of a data erase certificate or asset report then you should ask FM for this at the time of disposal.

The CDL reports include the University's asset tag number, if it is available.

Where is the Kit Stored Whilst Awaiting Disposal?

FM have secure storage areas at each campus for storing equipment awaiting disposal. You can be assured that a minimal risk exists that data from hard disks can be misused. Please note that physical storage space is not extensive so if you have a large amount of equipment to dispose of please discuss well in advance with the FM Office as it may be appropriate for the service provider to arrange collection direct.

Do I Need to backup any data?

You should remove all corporate data from the local hard disk before the equipment is removed (speak to the IT Service Desk if you are not sure how to do this – extension 7555). You should also remove any personal data that may have been stored on the local disk. Please note: You are responsible for the data that is stored on the local disk including its removal pre-disposal.

How Do I Request Disposal of Kit?

  1. Email the IT Service Desk (helpdesk@gre.ac.uk) to inform them that IT equipment needs to be disposed of – please provide the UG number for each item and the IT Service Desk will be able to tell you whether the kit can be reused elsewhere within the University. For non PC items (including monitors), please include a brief description, including the approximate age of the equipment.

  2. Ensure your departmental asset register of equipment is updated to reflect any equipment being disposed of as this is periodically updated by the Finance Office.

  3. Contact the Facilities Management Helpdesk for your campus, or complete a QUEMIS online helpdesk request if available, and request the actual disposal. You will again be required to provide the UG number of each piece of equipment being disposed of.

    • Greenwich: x 7701
    • Avery Hill: x 8848
    • Medway: x 43039
  4. If you require a data erase certificate, make sure you tell the FM Helpdesk before disposal is arranged.

  5. Keep items for disposal in a secure area until collected by FM.


Please note: The above process may take 1-2 weeks.

Can I Give Equipment Away to Charities, or Take It Home?

Unless equipment can be reused elsewhere within the University (as advised by the IT Service Desk), it must be disposed of via CDL. It cannot be passed on to third parties as it is not possible to perform the necessary hard disk erase internally nor is it possible to transfer software owned by the University to a third party.

In the case of computers, all the software, including Windows, is licensed to the University and the licenses cannot be transferred. It is not possible to perform the necessary secure hard disk erase internally, however, even if it were, the equipment would be virtually useless to anyone without an operating system.

Please do not offer IT equipment to others via "all-staff-announce".  Offering unwanted or old PCs create issues relating to out of warranty computers. Unwanted printers/faxes should be disposed of and not offered to others. This supports the University's sustainability policy, which actively discourages the use of these stand-alone devices in favour of more efficient and green options such as MfDs and electronic options.

NB: Giving away furniture to colleagues is fine since it does not pose similar issues

Further information on the disposal of unwanted equipment can be found on the Procurement web pages. (Intranet login required)

Last Updated: 01 Sep 2017