So, you’ve decided you need a data destruction program for your home or business. Maybe it was the super scary article we posted recently about the people who dig through garbage to earn their living, or you’re sick of someone in your life spending hours shredding one document at a time, or perhaps your city stopped taking the shredded paper you put in your recycling bin. Whatever your reason, it can be hard to know what to expect when setting up any new kind of program or service in your personal or professional life. To help walk you through the process, we’ve put together four easy steps that you can take when putting your data destruction program into action.
- Know what you need.
Are there laws or policies that your business or industry needs to be compliant with? How does that affect your data destruction practices? Should you be shredding anything with a name or address on it? Or are there less obvious, more complicated reasons for why you would shred something versus put it into the recycling bin? Do you only need to securely destroy documents, or do you have hard drives or other electronic media lurking around that could use secure disposal? Are the vendors you’re considering NAID certified, or just NAID members? There’s a huge difference between being NAID certified, and being a NAID member. NAID Certified providers are held to a more rigorous standard in terms of security and compliance when it comes to how they handle their customer’s data. A NAID member gets access to NAID resources and training, but isn’t held to the NAID certification regulatory standards. Ask yourself these questions to understand your data destruction needs.
- Screen a vendor or two.
Once you understand what you need, you can go out to the marketplace and determine which vendor(s) might be right for you. You can ask for a referral from a friend or business associate, or ask Google. Then reach out to the vendor(s) to ask questions and get a quote. A data destruction partner may ask if you’d like a member of their team to come out and do an on-site assessment for you, or they may ask several specific questions over the phone to gauge your needs. Pick the vendor you feel will be the best partner for you and your data destruction needs.
- Kick off your program!
Have your selected vendor drop off your secure data destruction bins, do some employee education about data and information security, and outline your approach to strategic data security. A simple explanation with your team about what should go in the data destruction bin vs. what should go in the recycling bin is a great place to start!
- Is it working?
Follow up with your internal team to see if your shred bins are overflowing before your next service date. Or, is your team still putting too much into the recycling bin and they aren’t used to putting documents into the data destruction bin? After 60 days, you’ll probably have the answer to how frequent you need your bins serviced to meet your team’s needs, or where bins need to be moved to increase visibility/ use, or if it’s just a matter of reminding your team that “secure destruction is good, when in doubt put it in the data destruction bin.”
It really can be this easy to roll out a data destruction program. Pick a data destruction partner that you think will meet your needs, and your whole team will thank you.