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From Trash to Treasure – IT Collection, Reuse, and Donation

This is a project that is being implemented by UTS at McMaster University, aiming to tackle the IT waste problem by working with McMaster staff and students.

Project Overview:

At McMaster University, the IT waste is either recycled through the company Greentec or reused through IT waste collection cages and on IT Waste Collection, Reuse, & Recycle Day. In Hamilton, the social enterprise greenBYTE refurbishes computer systems and provides them to at risk children. The opportunity for a collaboration between McMaster University and greenBYTE to support at risk children and improve the university’s IT waste collection system has been recognized. 

Updated IT Waste Disposal System – What You Need to Know:


Frequently Asked Questions

  • What happens to the information on the collected hard drives?
    UTS assumes the responsibility of fully sanitizing the collected hard drives, including hard drives from computers collected by Facility Services as well as those brought to collection events.
  • What is sanitization?
    Sanitization, also known as data erasure or wiping, is a secure means of erasing data on magnetic media, such as hard drives in computers. Other methods, such as reformatting or directory removal, are not sufficient to securely erase data; it will still be recoverable. Ensure your data is securely sanitized by taking advantage of this project.
  • Are personal devices accepted?
    We are collecting both university-generated IT waste as well as personal devices. Yes, this means you can bring in your old laptop(s) or home computer(s), or those provided by friends, family, or acquaintances. If you are a business looking to increase IT reuse, we refer you to SLSH greenBYTE. Equipment pick-up and hard drive sanitization by UTS continues to be free of charge.
  • Are mobile devices such as phones and tablets “IT equipment”?
    Yes, but due to the difficulty in guaranteeing secure data erasure, we ask that you reset your mobile device to factory settings before donating. Otherwise, they will be recycled.
  • Suggestions or questions about this initiative?
    Send an email to


A service charge is usually applied to the collection of IT waste items when the Facility Services phone number is used. As this is a project, NO service fee will be applied to faculty & staff who use the form between to have their IT waste collected.


Upcoming Events:

IT Collection Day in April TBD