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Document Destruction is Vital for Your Business

Posted by Rhonda Tanti

Document destruction is a great way to ensure that your documents and every bit of information written on them are safe and secure and will not fall into the wrong hands.

When people speak of document security, the first thing that comes to mind is digital documents, such as those revealed and exposed by WikiLeaks.  However, document security also applies to paper document security.

With a lot of information now being stored and disseminated electronically, it seems that many organisations have taken their paper documents for granted.  Yet, there are still instances when paper documents are stolen.  In other cases, organisations are transferring the information to their databases and just leave the paper documents out in the rubbish. 

The most unfortunate thing that most organisations do not realise is that it is by far easier to steal paper documents than those stored electronically.  But can you imagine if somebody from outside your organisation is able to get a copy of your research, board memos, price lists and other similarly sensitive documents?  The information on these can effectively ruin your business!

This type of document theft may be avoided by locking up your confidential documents in a secure filing cabinet or by instituting policies that would lessen physical access to your documents and offices.

But what about paper documents that you no longer need?  In other cases, even if would-be thieves cannot gain access into your offices, they can still rummage through the dumpster and search your rubbish for any information that might be useful for them.

This is the reason why secure shredding is a vital step to upholding your document security programme.  Plus, if you do the document shredding offsite, nobody would be able to go through your rubbish and painstakingly put it together.

In short, document shredding can easily secure the information on the documents that you throw out, not just those contained on paper, but also those on CDs, hard drives, X-rays, audio tapes, video tapes, and other media.

However, more than just keeping your organisation's secrets safe, document shredding makes sure that you are in compliance with the law.  Section 4.2 of the Australian Privacy Act 1988 requires all organisations to take "reasonable steps" to de-identify or destroy personal information if it is no longer needed.

So if you keep information about your clients or other people on hand, such as medical records, resumes or Curriculum Vitae, and other personnel records, then you should know that you are required by law to destroy these documents instead of just throwing them away.

Document destruction ensures that your sensitive documents are taken care of in a way that is affordable and in compliance with the law.  Make sure to choose a trustworthy company certified by the National Association for Information Destruction and NAID Australia to do the shredding for you while also caring for the environment through responsible recycling programmes.


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