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Tuesday, 06 September 2016 22:28

When to Shred Documents

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We are all aware of the importance of shredding confidential documents and that there are companies out there that can manage this process for us. However, just because these companies exist doesn’t mean that people are actually using them, often choosing to undertake the task themselves.

It can be a boring task to slowly feed a shredder page by page, not to mention the slowly bubbling rage every time a page gets stuck so to speed things up you start ripping pages into small pieces and throwing into the bin. Very tempting I know.......but while we may think the likelihood is low of someone poking through the rubbish to stick all the pieces back together, it can still happen.

So what more can we do to reduce the enormous amount of sensitive items that are still going to landfill? Here's a few that certainly made us think:

  • Not cutting up credit or debit cards. As credit and debit cards become ubiquitous, the correct disposal of them becomes ever more important. There is a big age difference here, with 95% of over 65’s stating that this is how they dispose of their bank cards versus 66% of 18-24 year olds.
  • Failure to redirect post. Sadly anyone who moves into your old premises/home is unlikely to securely shred any post that may arrive for you and will instead chuck it straight in the bin. While it is probable a lot of this will be junk, it could include bank statements or any communications from the passport or DVLA office if you do not change your addresses promptly.
  • Failure to shred letters and other correspondence. As we mentioned in our previous blog post, it is surprising just what constitutes a sensitive document. Letters and other correspondence do fall into this category, a fact recognised by 83% of over 65 year olds. When it comes to the 18-24 year olds category there is a marked difference, as only 44% report shredding documents.

With a third of Britons reporting an identity theft crime last year, and the internet becoming ever more prevalent in our lives, it is important that we protect our data. Shredding your confidential documents through a reputable company, disposing of your bank cards correctly, and staying safe online are all ways to help ensure that your data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.

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