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What You Need to Know Before You Hire a Shredding Company

Posted January 11, 2018 by Lynn Brown


The start of a new year is a great time to put better data security in place. One of the most important decisions a company can make is to line up secure destruction of digital and paper data that is no longer needed.

When confidential data is disposed of intact, there is an increased risk of a data breach.

A data breach is damaging in several ways. According to Ponemon’s 2017 Cost of Data Breach Study, the average data breach in the United States cost $7.35 million, and the average cost per record stolen was $225. A data breach can also damage a company’s reputation and customer loyalty.

How do you find a document destruction company that will destroy information in a secure and efficient manner?  

Here are 8 ways to identify an exceptional service provider

  1. Reputation: Is the company a recognized leader with an excellent reputation in the destruction services industry? Research the company online, ask for references (and check them out), and meet with company representatives to discuss their security and destruction processes
  2. Partnership: Giving an organization access to all of your company’s confidential information is a big deal – and you should feel like a valued partner. There should be personalized, flexible, and consistent service in a courteous manner. There should be extras too such as security risk assessment and security tips.
  3. Compliance: Part and parcel with on- or off-site destruction services, the company should provide expertise and guidance on security laws and legislation in your industry and geographical area. You should feel confident that the provider will be up-to-date on all privacy regulations that matter to your company.
  4. Security training: Ask about the company’s hiring process and security training. There should be rigorous security training for all personnel as well as background checks.
  5. Chain of custody: A secure chain of custody is critical from the moment confidential information is no longer needed in the workplace.There should be locked tamper-proof consoles provided, secure removal of information, and on- or off-site destruction in a locked area where the document handler is the only one with access. There should be a similar process for the secure storage, pick-up and destruction of hard drives and e-media as well.
  6. Industrial-grade destruction: How are documents and electronics destroyed? Cross-cut shredding effectively turns sheets of paper into tiny confetti-like pieces – and is the industry standard. Hard drives and other media types such as disks and CDs and mobile devices – and all the data they contain – should be destroyed by shearing or crushing equipment.
  7. Proof: There should be the option of watching the destruction process. Plus, the company should provide a Certificate of Destruction after every shred – guaranteeing documents have been securely destroyed. This is important for compliance purposes as well as peace of mind.
  8. Environmental commitment: Check that all materials – paper and electronics – are sent to appropriate companies for recycling after they’ve been destroyed. Some companies provide information such as how many trees are saved for every ton of recycled paper.

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To learn more about how Shred-it can protect your documents and hard drives, please contact us to get a free quote and security risk assessment.


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