Avoid These Three Common Information Disposal Mistakes

January 15, 2024

A hand is reaching into the frame of the photo and holding up three fingers to indicate the number 3.In the 1987 movie “Wall Street,” the character Gordon Gekko famously stated, “The most valuable commodity I know of is information.” While the movie may be fictional, this statement resonates with truth. Information holds immense value, not only for organizations, but also for identity thieves who relentlessly try to steal it. Given its significance as a valuable commodity worth safeguarding, it’s critical to recognize and avoid these three common information disposal mistakes that you and your business might be making.

1. Shredding Your Own Paper

At first glance, handling paper shredding in-house might seem cost-effective. However, there are critical factors to consider:

  • Inadequate shredding: Personal-sized shredders often fail to thoroughly destroy documents, leaving information susceptible to reconstruction. This can lead to non-compliance with privacy laws.
  • Productivity costs: Assigning your staff to feed paper sheets into a slow, noisy shredder detracts from their primary revenue-generating tasks. The time spent on jams and emptying the shredder could be utilized more efficiently. Additionally, the expenses associated with repairs and replacements add up over time. Choose a third-party shredding company that provides specialized shred collection containers for secure document disposal, and you’ll save time and ensure compliance.
  • Recycling challenges: Shredded material may not be recyclable through local collection services. Enlisting a professional shredding company allows for proper destruction, baling, and recycling of paper.
  • No proof of compliance: If your organization should experience a data breach, you will have no proof of compliance with data privacy laws. Engaging the services of a reputable shredding company means you will have a Certificate of Destruction after each shredding service to serve as your proof of compliance.
  • Security concerns: Paper tends to lay around the office on desks in the open, accessible to all staff members. By contrast, partnering with a shredding company for regularly-scheduled shredding will provide you with locked security containers. Employ a “shred everything” policy so employees don’t have to decide what to shred, which can leave you at risk for a data breach—they simply drop documents into the locked container. The presence of these locked containers heightens the importance and awareness of the need for information security.

2. Destroying Just Paper

While shredding paper documents is commendable, overlooking data stored on hard drives, zip drives, or other electronic media poses a risk. These devices have a lifespan, and improper disposal methods can lead to data breaches. Partnering with a shredding company offering hard drive and media destruction ensures complete data eradication. Reputable providers furnish a Certificate of Destruction for both paper and electronics, offering proof of secure disposal.

3. Choosing the Wrong Shredding Company

Selecting a shredding company solely based on a phone book listing may result in unsatisfactory service or non-compliance with regulations. Look for a shredding company that not only offers the services you require but also upholds a solid reputation. Choosing a NAID AAA Certified shredding company guarantees compliance with data protection laws through stringent audits. This certification ensures adherence to privacy laws and meets your specific needs.

For comprehensive data protection, UltraShred Technologies delivers NAID AAA Certified on-site shredding, complete with secure shred collection containers. Whether for a one-time service or scheduled shredding, we safeguard your data from disposal to secure destruction.

Contact us at 904-928-0200 or complete the form on this page to ensure compliance with all privacy laws.

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