Shredding your documents is more than just a convenient way to clear your desk—document shredding can go a long way towards protecting your information as well as any clients’ information you might have. If you’re a business, your customers and clients will appreciate knowing that their information is being fully protected by an extra layer of security. If you’re shredding on a personal level, you deserve the peace of mind that comes with professional services. Professional shredding can offer a much greater level of security than a basic office shredder can provide, and that can make all the difference in both personal and professional settings.
How does shredding improve security?
When you’re finished with a document, a professional shredder is the safest way to make sure your personal information stays personal. Many people don’t stop to consider exactly how much personal information is on their paperwork at home or in a filing cabinet at work. People are constantly receiving documents that are loaded with personal data, and often don’t safely dispose of them. You probably know that it’s important to shred documents like bank statements and bills, but paperwork like travel itineraries, pay stubs, and even junk mail can also leak personal information if you don’t safely dispose of it first. When you shred, you make sure that information never falls into the wrong hands.
Leaving your personal information exposed is dangerous
The ultimate penalty for being too cavalier with your personal information is identity theft. Essentially, if a criminal gains enough relevant personal information about you, they will have the opportunity to open new accounts or create credit cards in your name. In some cases, it’s possible for identity thieves to make purchases directly from your bank account. Creative identity thieves can use sources you might not expect. Some junk mail, for example, offers recipients the opportunity to start a new credit card. If an identity thief gets access to this mail, it’s possible for them to take advantage of that card under your name. Remember to be careful about shredding everything that has your information on it—it’s better to be safe and shred things you don’t need to rather than to wish you’d shredded something that you didn’t.
Identity theft is on the rise. It’s been reported that over 14 million credit cards were exposed in 2017, and identity theft increased by 88% between 2016 and 2017. As personal information becomes easier to access, those numbers will likely continue to increase. Having your identity stolen can be extremely costly, stressful, and may take a long time to fully correct. While there’s many different factors to keep in mind to protect your online information, securing your paperwork is much simpler. Professional shredding is an almost foolproof way to keep potential thieves from accessing any information from printed materials.
What makes professional shredding better than an office shredder?
If your focus is security, there’s no comparison between professional shredding and an office shredder. The average office shredder will turn documents into neat strips of paper that a determined criminal can piece back together. In fact, these paper strips can serve as an indicator to criminals of exactly what documents you consider important.
A professional shredder, on the other hand, will completely destroy your documents, rather than only damaging them. When documents are totally destroyed, you’ll have no worries whatsoever about anyone accessing that data.
Office shredders have a limited capacity, and can only handle a certain amount of paperwork. Constantly feeding paper into the shredder and emptying the receptacle can be a waste of time, especially if you’re also being forced to worry about every staple and paperclip in a pile of documents. Any stray staple has the potential to jam or even break an office shredder, which can be costly and stressful.
This stress can be completely avoided by using a professional service. Professional shredders are equipped to handle large amounts of paperwork at once, and can easily manage staples, paperclips, and bindings. Professional shredders also offer customer service, which can make the shredding experience much more pleasant as anyone who’s struggled with a defunct office shredder in the past already knows.
While it’s always a good idea to shred your documents, even if it’s only with an office shredder, shredding professionally has distinct advantages. You’ll have a cleaner office space, but more importantly you’ll have greater peace of mind in the knowledge that your information is not just mostly secure, but completely secure.