June 16, 2018 07:29 CET

Connectivity creates secure transport with Tele2 IoT, Inrego and Minifinder

Transporting computers containing highly sensitive data is a matter of security. Refurbishing those computers is also a matter of security, as well as a matter of money and sustainability.

Inrego refurbishes IT devices, helping the bottom lines of both clients and customers, while also helping the environment. Minifinder makes sure that while those devices are in transit they are safe and secure. And it all happens with the help of Tele2 IoT and connectivity.

Living in the era of e-waste

Like most of us if you look around your home you can probably find at least a few discarded phones or tablets, and maybe even a computer. New technology caught your eye or maybe your old devices stopped working and weren’t worth repairing.

Now think about companies and public organizations and how many IT devices they use and how many they replace each year. The number is huge.

Around 40 million tons of electronic waste (e-waste) is generated annually, which is the equivalent of throwing away 800 laptops every second. E-waste comprises 70% of overall toxic waste and only 12.5% of e-waste is recycled. The rest end up in landfills and incinerators, releasing harmful toxins into the air.

Equally important is that throwing away computers and other IT devices is a big security risk, particularly with GDPR coming into effect. Now more than ever companies need to ensure the often highly sensitive data contained on their IT devices is handled securely from start to finish.

Inrego – a trusted partner to refurbish your electronics

Sweden’s Inrego is a trusted partner for companies looking for a secure way to dispose of their IT devices. Inrego’s 130 employees handle about 20 thousand units each month, which are mostly sourced from companies and public organizations in Sweden and the Nordics. Once they arrive at the Inrego facilities the devices go through a rigorous process to wipe them clean of data, and are then refurbished. Around 95% of the computers are sold on to companies, schools and consumers in Sweden and Europe and only 5 % are sent for recycling.

The environmental benefits, as well as the benefits to the bottom line for both sellers and buyers are obvious. But the big reason companies and municipalities choose to work with us is security. Our facilities have the highest rating – three – available, our staff undergo rigorous screening, and now, with our new end-to-end secure transport solution there is never a moment when it is possible for a company’s devices – and the information contained on them – to fall into the wrong hands.

Ulf Berglund Procurement Director Inrego

With new expectations for the companies being set, Inrego found the way to turn the new complex legislative paradigm into an opportunity. By using technology they have managed to give their customers a peace of mind they deserve.

Minifinder powered by Tele2 IoT – adding an extra security dimension

That end-to-end solution is where the partnership between Tele2 IoT and cutting-edge IoT company Minifinder comes into play. Through their positioning technology Minifinder helps companies optimize and streamline their fleet. For Inrego Minifinder provides GPS trackers that are placed in every transport cabinet, allowing Inrego to track the movement of devices from the moment they leave a company until the moment they arrive at the secure Inrego facilities. And without Tele2 IoT’s connectivity none of it would work.

“Tele2 IoT’s connectivity allows us to ensure that our devices work anywhere in the world and at all times,” says Dean Maros, Founder of Minifinder. “This is a great benefit for Inrego, because they can easily track the devices they’re transporting at any location, as well as draw geographical areas and paths for the transport trucks – and if those areas are deviated from Inrego is immediately alerted. This ensures the entire process is secure and gives peace of mind to everyone.”

Experiencing the first benefits from starting their IoT journey

It was only in 2017 that Inrego began its IoT journey but already it’s been transformative for the business.

“The solution provided by Mindfinder and Tele2 IoT has been a game changer,” says Ulf Berglund. “It is imperative that sensitive information is kept secure during the transport, but with the GPS trackers and the connectivity we’ve added that extra layer of security that we were missing – and it’s changed everything.”

While many companies understand the importance of wiping data from computers they don’t always see phones the same way, despite these being full of emails and other data that they want to keep secure.

“We work with all IT devices,” says Ulf Berglund. “And we’re trying to encourage our customers to treat all of them the same. At Inrego our secure processes wipe all data from any device, so companies can be sure that their information is kept safe.”

The IoT solution brought to Inrego by Mindfinder and Tele2 IoT also increases efficiency and profitability

“We can now see exactly where things are located,” says Ulf Berglund. “For example, if our cabinets filled with devices have been standing too long we can contact the client and find out what is wrong. Because of this we get better rotation of products by getting the devices into our facilities more quickly, and can turn around more products in a shorter amount of time.”

It’s the combination of security, sustainability, innovation, and an eye on the bottom line that has driven Inrego to 20% year-on-year growth for nearly a decade, and it’s that magical combo that will help them continue on their trajectory.

A business caring about the future generations

“From a budget perspective a school or company can buy around twice times as many computers from us as they would if they were buying new,” says Erik Pettersson, Sustainability Manager at Inrego. “And from a sustainable point of view they are doing something that is beneficial for the planet and for everyone’s future, so it’s win-win for everyone.”

Inrego always sends a settlement report to clients. The report includes data wiping certification, a financial report with the value of the products, and an environmental report with carbon dioxide savings.

“To put it in real terms, CO2 savings for one reused desktop is 109 kilos,” says Erik Pettersson . “For a laptop it’s 69 kilos, and for a smartphone 27 kilos. So what we’re doing is having a real impact that everyone can be a part of.”

A group of independent schools in Sweden buy both re-used computers from Inrego and then sell them back to the company when they need to be replaced.

“We used to lease equipment but that only worked if we handed computers back that were in top shape,” says Ole Lidegran, CTO at Lärande i Sverige. “With 4500 students in 17 school across Sweden, you can imagine that that didn’t always work. It’s important that we not only have computers that work but that we can keep them up-to-date.

“With Inrego, the money we save is reinvested into the schools and we’re ensured of up-to-date IT devices. And equally important, we’ve been able to reduce our climate impact by 67 tonnes of carbon dioxide – enough energy to power 270 apartments in a year.”

Inrego is always preparing for new advances in technology and knows that within three years of new tech being introduced it will end up at their facility.

“Ten years ago we didn’t have smartphones and five years ago we didn’t have Chromebooks, but we’re always ready for what’s coming down the pipeline,” says Ulf Berglund. “We also know that the need to securely wipe data from IT devices will continue to grow, and that more and more companies are keen to lower their environmental footprint. Those two factors, combined with providing organizations, companies, schools and consumers with well-priced and reliable products will continue to drive our business.

“And with our new IoT solution from Minifinder and Tele2 IoT we are confident that we can offer the most secure solution around.”