Is your home shredder a data breach waiting to happen?

If your home shredder has gotten more use in the last 12 months than ever before, we understand, and know that you’re not enjoying it. Offices are closed, employees still want to securely destroy their documents, so these home shredders have experienced a bit of a renaissance. While it might seem like using them to shred at home is better than nothing, here are three reasons your home shredder might just be a data breach waiting to happen.

 

What are you doing with the shredded paper?

Are you putting your shredded paper in a paper bag, and placing it in your recycling bin at the curb? Do you feel like that’s better than putting your paper into the trash? You might not know this, but most Minnesota cities and municipalities do not accept shredded paper in your recycling bin. It clogs up their machines, and worse, cause malfunctions and lead to machine fires. The extra step you went through to put your shredded paper into a paper bag and into your recycling bin is not helping the planet because your shredded paper is ultimately going to the landfill.

 

We also know that people have taken to burning their shredded paper after they’ve spent time shredding it with their home shredders. If you’re just going to throw it in a fire that will ultimately add carbon monoxide to the atmosphere, it seems like skipping the shredding step would save you a little time and electricity. Burning, while more secure than putting documents in the trash, has a negative effect on the ozone layer and adds to carbon emissions that are helping to raise earth’s temperature.

 

Home shredder strips= art project?

If you’re not sitting by your recycling bin, waiting for your shredded paper to be picked up, how do you know it’s getting to your recycling center, and eventually the landfill? Is it possible that a bored neighbor or dumpster diver could swipe your shredded paper and piece it back together again? This might seem like a highly unlikely scenario, but did you know, The Center for Victim Research estimates 7-10 percent of Americans will have their identity stolen this year?

 

Your home shredder is S L O W

Because sliding your sensitive documents into your home shredder takes awhile, you may let your shredding pile spiral out of control. You might also start your shredding project, get interrupted, and not return to it in a timely manner. Therefore, your home office gets to be a mess, and you have a lot of sensitive data sitting around. This can be a temptation for a well-meaning family member to learn more about what you do each day, how your company is faring financially, or just a way to learn things they shouldn’t have access to.

 

So how do you avoid your home shredder? Take a trip to your office/ headquarters and fill the shredding bins! A trip to the office is A LOT quicker than sitting for hours at your home shredder. You can free up time, know that your documents will be securely destroyed AND recycled by your document destruction provider, and avoid a potentially nasty paper cut.