Things tend to get busy in an office or professional environment. If you are overloaded with work, document shredding and safe disposal of sensitive information may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Document destruction is important for a variety of reasons. First of all, it’s the law to protect sensitive information. Under the Data Protection Act and other various laws, it is in your best interest to dispose of documents safely and efficiently. You can also avoid things such as crowded file cabinets, corporate espionage and identity theft with the right precautions.
The very sight of a Shred With Us truck pulling up to your location can instill trust in your employees. Hiring a service like ours will tell people that you care about their confidential and sensitive information. This can also ensure the trust of your consumers. No one wants their identity stolen or their money messed with. Huge stacks of paper can be a fire hazard, can look unruly and can generally waste space. Imagine 20 years of backlogged payroll information. The implications of sensitive documents being used for the wrong reasons can be huge.
Reasons to Shred
There are many reasons to shred your paper and dispose of sensitive documents safely. We’ve compiled a list of tips that can help guide you on your way to choosing the right document destruction service.
- EVERY business needs to shred
All businesses should discard confidential data regularly. There are price lists, sales statistics, drafts of proposals and bids, correspondence between clients, customer and email lists, memos, and contact information that can cause problems if stolen or neglected. Having your business activity monitored by a rival business is not unheard of. Corporate espionage is a real threat and improper disposal of hard drives or paper documents can have unintended consequences.
- Sensitive documents should be destroyed regularly
Many businesses have different retention schedules for sensitive documents. Usually, you keep documents for a number of years for tax or audit purposes. Be sure to have the proper documents according to governing legal requirements. After the designated retention period, no record should be left in the office.
If you do not adhere to a routine of destroying stored records, many unsavory things can happen. If you company exhibits suspicious or nonexistent disposal practices, the company could be seen in a negative light in the event of a litigation of audit. In the event of a lawsuit, each party must provide all the relevant records to the opposing counsel within 85 days of the defendant’s initial response. If either of the parties do not fulfill this obligation, it will result in a summary finding against them. By destroying your records on a set schedule, a company appropriately limits the amount of sensitive material it must search through to comply with this law.
From a risk management perspective, documenting the exact date a group of records is destroyed is a prudent and recommended legal precaution. You must choose a method that ensures complete and utter obliteration of sensitive information.
- Regular business records should be destroyed
The daily trash of major businesses or corporations can be monitored by competitors and identity thieves. Without any program or protocol to control it, the daily trash of everyday business correspondence can pose a threat to your business. Daily records and memos that include misprints, drafts of bids and correspondence, phone messages and text messages to important clients can shed light into the confidential aspects of your business.
All businesses can suffer the consequences of improper sensitive document disposal. Some business records that you deem incidental can still be used against you. The only means of mitigating potential exposure and damage is to make sure information is securely collected and disposed of.
- Recycling is not an adequate alternative
Recycling companies often use un-screened, minimum wage workers to extract paper from recycling facilities. The workers must labor extensively to sort through paper. Often, these conditions are not closely monitored. The acceptable paper is stored for indefinite periods of time until there is enough type of that paper to sell in bulk quantities to post-recycling entities. The sorted paper is sold, still intact, to the highest bidder. These buyers are often overseas and can store the baled paper for weeks or months until it is used to make recycled consumer goods.
There is no fiduciary responsibility to these companies that deal with recycled goods. Paper can be given away or sold. By doing so, a company gives up their power and say about how this paper is handled. There is no practical or efficient way of establishing the exact date in which paper was destroyed – or not destroyed – by a recycling company. In the event of a legal dispute or audit, you will want to have a certificate of destruction (something that Shred With Us provides) handy. If you have this certificate, it can prevent many legal cases from ever happening.
From a risk management perspective, recycling your sensitive paper documents is risky and not in your best interest. If you do not use a secure shredding service and a legal case does surface, the selection of unsafe document disposal could be considered negligent.
- Choose the right On-Site Document Destruction Company
Choose a document destruction company that always gives you a signed testimonial of the services provided. This is typically called a certificate of destruction, which is an important legal record of compliance with a retention schedule and federal guidelines. You have multiple reasons to contact a professional and accredited service like Shred With Us. You can be held liable if an identity theft case ever surfaces and you are found to be negligent in choosing the document destruction services. If you choose Shred With Us, there will be no chance of litigation due to improper disposal techniques.
Be sure that you are dealing with a company that uses superior security procedures. Unfortunately, there are some companies that provide certificates of destruction while having no semblance of a security code or destruction process. Anyone that is interested in document destruction services should do their research. Look up our policies and procedures. On-site document destruction is an option in most cities. If you live in the Southeast, contact us today.
- Beware of Record Storage Companies
There have been cases where many commercial records storage facilities offer records destruction as a way to service and keep their customers. In a survey conducted by the National Association for Information Destruction, a majority of these commercial storage firms were found inadequate. They literally did not have the equipment necessary to dispose of these sensitive documents. It is a common practice in that industry to subcontract destruction services. In some cases, storage firms were found guilty in overcharging their customers for document destruction. They were also selling the paper to recycling companies. Once the paper leaves your hands, there is no guarantee that these documents will be destroyed. If you use our services, you can watch us properly dispose of all the documents on-site. You can personally inspect our work.
- Employees Should not be Responsible
Payroll information and materials that involve sensitive information should not be taken lightly. This can include labor relations, legal affairs, credit card information and social security information. If you give a lower-level employee access to these files for disposal, the power is no longer in your hands. Lower-wage employees may have an economic incentive to steal credit card information and sell industry secrets to competitors. We’d like to live in a world where you can trust everyone you hire, but history has proven that this is not always the case. An acceptable alternative would be to have the materials destroyed under the supervision of upper management or by a shredding company that specializes in top notch security.
- Information Protection is Vital
Security is always at the top of the list when it comes to business priorities. In a survey conducted by the Conference Board, top executives from 300 companies ranked their priorities and their top issues facing businesses around the world. Second only to employee health screening, the security of company records is massively important in the eyes of big business leaders. These issues always require attention, policy development and redesign. Giving away information can be like giving away money. It doesn’t make sense from a business point-of-view.
We are Carolina’s leading document shredding services company. We are committed to security and privacy that will ensure the success of your business. We strive for the highest standards of courtesy, professionalism and we can guarantee your total satisfaction.
We regularly service security-conscious organizations like the Federal Reserve Bank, The U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Attorney’s Office, The U.S. Secret Service, the Internal Revenue Service, and many Department of Defense (DOD) contractors.
Shredding Services Greensboro, NC
Complete verifiability is essential to us and the companies listed above. Your company or institution can enjoy these same advantages every time we visit your facility. We are essentially audited every time we destroy documents at your institution, which will provide increased legal protection in the event of a legal dispute. We have invested over a quarter of a million dollars per vehicle in state-of-the-art technology to assure the confidentiality of your information. If you need document destruction and paper shredding in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina or the Southeast United States, give us a call to discuss the destruction of your sensitive documents.