Although in a digital age we are not as reliant on paper documents as we once were, they are still the most important way we store crucial records. The wrong paper in the wrong hands can do a lot of damage. So whether it is your clients’ or your own sensitive information, keeping confidential data secure is essential.
1. Types of documents you should be shredding
When considering what types of documents you should be shredding, here are a few examples to get you started. Tax returns, photo IDs, bank statements, voided checks, employee pay stubs, credit card information, copies of sales receipts, documents containing sensitive information, and employment records. This is of course not an exhaustive list, but generally you want to get rid of anything containing personal information that isn’t publically available.
2. Avoid unnecessary trouble
Holding on to documents you no longer need which aren’t kept in a secure area can pose the threat of a data breach. If this scenario describes your current situation, it might be time to do some Spring cleaning. The first step is to sort important documents that you need to keep from ones you no longer need. Lock up the ones you decide to keep or scan them and store your digital files in a secure place.
Once sorted, shredding physical documents you no longer need is the best way to ensure that they’re destroyed correctly. A data breach can put your organization at risk as well as tarnish your reputation. Here are a few reminders why shredding sensitive documents should be a top priority.
3. The rule of law
Personal protection is one thing, but if you’re responsible for other people’s information, you have a legal responsibility also. Keeping client information secure is the law. For many businesses, shredding important documents is necessary for keeping up with compliance requirements.
Depending on where you located, the rules might be different, but it is important to be aware of your responsibilities and be certain that you are dealing with business documents in a way that will help keep you compliant with local regulations. Staying in compliance will keep your company out of legal trouble, as well as give you and your clients peace of mind.
4. Your reputation is always on the line
Keeping sensitive documents that have the potential to allow for a data breach not only presents a legal risk to you or your company, it also can damage your reputation should a breach occur. Having a data security plan in place can help diminish this threat. Employees and clients have a right to privacy and your entire business will be compromised if you are unable to provide this basic standard of service. It might seem like an unnecessary precaution, but it can end up saving you a lot of grief in the future.
5. For the sake of our environment
In addition to the legal and business considerations, there is also an environmental impact when companies decide to simply throw away sensitive documents without shredding them. Not only will you end up saving a lot of space, but with a secure shredding program in place, you’ll stay in compliance with laws and can be assured that your paper materials will be recycled in an eco-friendly manner.
6. So you can rest easy
Whether you’re responsible simply for your own documents, those of your family, of those of an entire business empire, you’re constantly juggling countless concerns. Data security is something that can be taken care of quickly, easily, and for a reasonable price. By scheduling regular paper shredding sessions you’ll have peace of mind and so will your clients.