One of the most overlooked and undervalued tasks in an individual’s life or business’ smooth operation is implementing effective document destruction, regardless of documents being hard or soft copies. Shredding your documents is not necessarily a difficult task, but it can easily become an ordeal once you’ve accumulated enough. Just like segregating, recycling, eating a balanced diet and exercising, you won’t always want to shred your documents, but it’s good for you, and for the environment.
Estimates show that the United States consumes over 80 million tons of paper every year, effectively making paper the most common type of solid waste in the world. All forms of transactions, communications, and information storage are still largely dependent on paper, including roughly 95% of all business-related matters. Employing a document shredding service will not only help the environment and clear up much-needed storage space, but this helps ensure you don’t fall victim to identity theft.
You’ll want to find a document shredding company that can provide on site shredding services, inclusive of hard drive destruction. All you’ll have to do is prepare your actual disposables for the document shredding service, and they’ll take care of the rest in a secure manner. The only question you’ll have to ask yourself is, “What documents can be destroyed?”
- Personal documentation
- Information that can be accessed through other means
- Anything only active employees should know.
The key is to think like an identity thief. What information do you normally need handy whenever you’re on the phone with the bank or buying something using your credit card? Any document, even junk mail, that contains your name, address, and/or phone number is a red flag for shredding. Proper document disposal is all the more crucial for documents that contain any banking information, insurance policies, investments, retirement plans, your social security number, travel itineraries, bills, etcetera.
Before disposing of anything, take the time to ensure you have another way to get to that information, such as a soft copy.
Aside from disposing of anything that contains personal information, a document shredding service should pay close attention to properly disposing of contracts, blueprint, manuals, client and supplier records, performance appraisals, new product information, medical records, business correspondence, budgets, forecasts, sales reports, etcetera.
Not only will professional document shredding companies help make sure you know which documents to shred and which ones to keep, they will also pack the shredded output responsibly, with waste management and paper recycling in mind. You’ll be getting back space for storage, peace of mind against identity theft, and you’d also be giving the environment a hand.