Document Shredding: ‘Destroying’ The Things That You ‘Value’

By: John Morris


What do the following industries have in common?

Law enforcement
Legal industries
Government
Banking
Health care
Financial service (brokerage)
Entertainment
Technology
Manufacturing industries

The answer: the above-mentioned industries regard information as a very important aspect of their operations. They are information-sensitive – they have a need to ensure that important and confidential data are secured and protected at all times.

What data are considered classified? Some are listed below:

Disbursement records (Wages, etc.)
Accounts records (financial statements such as the balance sheet, etc.)
Sales receipts
Bank records
Social Security records
Business letters
Customer information
Personnel records
Computer printouts
Computer discs or tapes

Why is there a need to protect such data? Industries are in constant danger of having such sensitive information to ‘fall into the wrong hands’ – people that are out to inflict damage, such as a discontented employee or a competitor, which could result to either of the following:

Bad publicity
Humiliation
Loss of staff or key personnel (probably to a competitor)
Loss of customers
Loss of job or running out of business
A possible indictment

This is why every information-sensitive industry needs a proper and secure records storage and management. However, such course of action usually requires much room (think of all those years’ worth of papers and electronic tapes piling up); it also incurs high costs. In addition, there will also come a time when the company will need to purge itself of the age-old materials. But these outdated materials will still be sensitive, and throwing away classified documents in a wastebasket will not do the trick – they can still be collected and sorted out, the information still made available to whoever would want them.

There is a truly a great need for a secure disposal of sensitive data, and an effective solution to this crucial aspect of an industry is document shredding.

Document shredding is a safe and secure option for discarding restricted documents and materials. In document shredding, sensitive files and records are destroyed, turning them into bits that can no longer be recognized; thereby ensuring that confidentiality is maintained.

The document shredding process is entirely flexible that it can adapt to any industry’s distinct requirements in destroying sensitive records. Depending on what would suit it’s needs, a company can either purchase it’s own document shredder or employ outsourced document shredding services, who can then perform the document shredding process on-site or off-site.

On-site document shredding provides industries with the opportunity to observe the actual shredding of their materials ‘on site’, right at their doorsteps. The use of mobile shredding vehicles and equipment will especially fit those who do not want their records to leave their site intact.

In an off-site document shredding, the document-shredding company collects the materials in security containers and hauls them in a safe location that may be monitored by security cameras where they are destroyed into little pieces. Aside from the surveillance cameras, industries can also send representatives to personally observe the actual document shredding process.

Once the classified records are destroyed in a proper and secure manner, the document shredding company will then provide its client with a “Certificate of Destruction,” which notes the date and time as well as the accounting of the materials shredded. This not only serves as a proof that the documents were destroyed properly; it also gives the client the necessary data for an audit trail.

There are many advantages in making use of the services of an outside document shredding company:

A document shredding service enables the company to save thousands of dollars by not having to buy a document shredding equipment and not having to worry of the depreciation as well as the maintenance costs.

A document shredding service also enables the company to save in terms of labor. Employees would not need to spend hours to do the document shredding. Employees can spend the time more effectively by doing their own jobs.

A document shredding company also helps the environment by recycling. Recycling is the final step in almost all the document shredding process. The shredded materials are collected and, through baling and/or pulping, can be used again to form other items such as boxes and copier papers, among others.

We cannot deny that protecting the interests of a company remains a crucial phase of every business, especially in this age of information. And with document shredding, we are not only securing an industry’s information, we are also helping the environment – a win-win solution.

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For more great document shredding info and advice check out:

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