Shredding: It’s Not Just for Paper
Shredding paper is primarily a response to legal obligations that are designed to protect the private information of staff and clients. The Privacy Act of 1974, HIPAA, and GLBA are just a few examples of federal laws that have been enacted to combat the improper use and disposal of personally identifiable information (PII) and other private data. But paper documents aren’t the only way data thieves steal information.
Here we discuss other ways data thieves can get information without the need for hard copy documents.
Hard Drives and Other Storage Media
- Hard drives that have been retired and kept in storage pose a risk of being lost or stolen. Even if you have attempted to erase the information on them, the information is likely still retrievable—and criminals know how to retrieve it.
- Other storage devices, such as backup tapes, SSDs, external hard drives, USB drives, cell phones, CDs/DVDs/Blu-rays, and microfilm/microfiche should all be destroyed at the end of their use.
Total Destruction Solution
Hard Drive and Media Shredding
Partner with a shredding company that not only shreds paper documents, but also offers hard drive and media shredding. If they are shredding just your paper, your electronic media is at risk. To be compliant with data privacy laws, be sure to have hard drives and any other electronic storage media shredded, too.
Be sure that your shredding company also recycles the shredded materials, keeping them out of the landfill and protecting the environment. Save your company time, money, and hassles by working with a shredding company that can destroy electronic media as well as paper documents.
What should happen to your old uniforms, branded clothing, ID badges, key cards, gift cards, giveaway items, recalled products, and the like? It may seem like a good idea to donate, sell, recycle, or repurpose these items. Although this may seem to be the responsible course of action, it can open up your business to major risks.
You have invested a great deal of time, money, and resources in building and protecting your brand and logo, and you don’t want it destroyed by mishandling, misrepresentation, or fraud. For instance, if a staff uniform, key card, gift card, or recalled product becomes accessible to the general public, situations like these may result:
- A key card is used to gain unauthorized access to your premises or an employee-only area for the purpose of theft or doing harm to your employees
- Your branded uniform is worn during the commission of a crime or activity contrary to your ethics, making your company’s brand infamous by association
- An expired/retired gift card is activated and used to fraudulently obtain products or services from your company
- A recalled product you discarded finds its way to someone who is injured or otherwise harmed by it
While your staff may want to hang on to old uniforms or branded clothing as a memento or as part of their own personal clothing line, it is better to remain protective of all branded clothing and products and request their return at the end of employment. Your safest choice is to work with a reputable product destruction service.
GreenServ offers paper shredding, hard drive and media shredding, and product destruction services to businesses in Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas. For more information, simply give us a call at 662-533-0940 or complete the form on this page. Our experts are standing by to help you protect your confidential information and your company’s brand.