One of the most effective ways to maintain privacy for yourself or your business is to have your confidential documents shredded by a professional document destruction service provider.
On-site mobile document destruction ensures that every piece of paper you need destroyed is done so securely. To help you prepare for document destruction, here is a comprehensive checklist on how to maintain privacy through shredding.
Preparing Your Documents for Destruction
Before you hire a firm to handle your document destruction, it is important to have a plan in place for what will be shredded and when:
- Create a Shredding Schedule – Review our list of tips for when to shred important documents and how to know if something should be permanently filed for future reference. It is important to create an internal schedule that is specific to your business so you can remove documents as needed.
- Maintain Compliance with the Law – Always maintain compliance with federal, state and local laws regarding privacy. From client and patient files to financial and business records, you want to protect yourself against liability and potential fraud.
- Documentation – When a document is destroyed, it should be recorded. Scheduled shredding is a good service for this reason, because you can prepare for it and ensure all destroyed documents are noted.
Choosing a Paper Shredding Company
When the time comes to choose who will handle your shredding needs, they should fit your requirements. Read below for a checklist in selecting someone or read our thorough outline of how to choose a shredding company here.
- On-Site Services – The best shredding option is an on-site service. This maintains a chain of custody and ensures you can watch papers being removed and then shredded before receiving the Certificate of Destruction you need for any future audits.
- Employee Screening – Ensure the company thoroughly screens their employees, ideally through FBI background checks or similarly stringent measures. Those employees, regardless of screening should never have access to your documents directly.
- Better Business Bureau – Check to make sure your document destruction or paper shredding company has been accredited with the BBB. You can check the better business bureau’s website to see if there has been any negative feedback about the company.
- Thorough Destruction – Check to ensure the destruction methods used are thorough enough to have made all of your sensitive documents completely unrecognizable. Ribbon cutting can be reassembled and is therefore risky.
- Environmentally Friendly – Check that the papers are then properly mixed for added security, and then recycled.
Working with Your Paper Shredder
Once you have selected a paper shredding partner, work with them to ensure your documents are destroyed on time and to specification.
- Carts and Consoles – Your paper shredder should provide you with locked, tamper-proof bins, carts, and consoles for storing documents before destruction. Be sure these are used by all staff members.
- No In-House Shredding – To ensure compliance, remove in-house shredders and make it known that the partner shredding company is the only method by which papers can be destroyed.
- Ongoing Service – While it varies whether companies require contracts, be sure yours will perform scheduled pickups and offers supplemental services like hard drive destruction and office purges.
If you are ready to choose a document destruction firm you can trust to provide every service listed above, contact Strongbox today, a BBB accredited company.