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Shredding Helps Your Company Avoid Facing Information Security Risks

Information Security Risks

There are many risks a company could face over its lifespan. The most dangerous risks include an information security breach, corporate identity theft, or the stealing of trade secrets and proprietary data. Managing confidential or sensitive information is necessary for every business to succeed. Identity theft, security breaches and the potential disclosure of proprietary information are all threats that most businesses may not easily overcome.

It’s essential that all businesses, manage the destruction and disposal of documents and digital storage devices in order to avoid facing these risks. Although this could happen to any type or size business, the sectors that are the most at risk for information security issues are: Financial, Healthcare, Educational, and Government.

It’s crucial for every organization to put an information security policy in place. As part of this policy, there should be regular communication sent to your employees to help them follow the confidential information disposal practices you have implemented.

Here are four ways your company can avoid facing information security risks:

  1. Shred and destroy confidential information regularly.
    There’s a variety of confidential and proprietary information that every company must retain. Everything from product prototypes, price lists, and customer data, to client proposals, email lists, research data. If this information is not reviewed regularly and destroyed, your business could face horrible consequences. It’s best to implement a regular business records retention schedule throughout the year so that you may be able to avoid any risk of theft.
  2. Review your business records every quarter.
    It’s best to have a regular review of your business records so that any information that can be disposed of is identified quickly and then shredded and destroyed. Thieves will look for all kinds of documents, and whatever important information they can get their hands on. If sensitive information is not disposed of properly, there is increased risk of liability for your company.
  3. Do not recycle any confidential information.
    Although recycling is an honorable thing, some recycling companies do not properly screen their employees. The environment in which they work is not always monitored effectively, so there is room for theft. Recycled paper customers may not receive their order right away and your sensitive documents could be sitting in a warehouse for weeks or months.
  4. Make sure you hire the best shredding and destruction service.

Choosing a document destruction company can be challenging, but it’s easier if you know what to look for. It’s best to hire a service which provides a certificate of destruction – this gives you peace of mind that your business is in compliance. Be sure to find a certified professional who’s is also accredited by the NAID (National Association for Information Destruction). That way, if an identity theft case ever surfaces, your business will not be held liable.

Hiring a professional shredding service will definitely help you avoid information security risks. If you put a regular shredding/destruction process in place, your business will be protected. IntelliShred has been helping businesses do just that for over two decades. We have been awarded the highest security rating, “AAA Certified” by the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID). Contact us today to find out more information on how we can assist you.

Workplace Identity Theft

In today’s business landscape, the risk of workplace identity theft is high. The damage that can come from identity theft could not only affect your company’s bottom line, but ultimately, its reputation as well. Most employers think they’re immune because they’ve got special security measures in place. However, identity thieves seem to always be one step ahead, so it’s crucial that your business is doing everything possible to avoid workplace identity theft.

There is a significant amount of damage that could be caused by workplace identity theft. Everything from bad press and a negative brand image, to a severe lack of trust from your customers. It’s expensive and quite difficult to bounce back from the issues surrounding the theft of confidential information. Businesses which store any kind of confidential, sensitive or personal information, could also be held liable if it is stolen.

Business owners have no problem protecting their digital records with encrypted software and password protection, but hackers can still break through to steal confidential information. Even if a company uses firewalls, spyware and other tools to maintain the security of their computers and media storage devices, they are still at risk. Safeguarding their computers will help, but what about their hard copy information? Sensitive documents must still be used in certain industries, so that brings an increased risk if they are not disposed of properly.

If those paper documents accumulate and aren’t regularly shredded or destroyed, your company’s confidential information could easily fall into the wrong hands. Even your own employees may end up being the worst identity thieves. It’s necessary to protect all forms of confidential information from workplace identity theft – digital, hard copy.

You could say that office shredders are somewhat effective, but it’s not productive for your employees to spend the amount of time it takes to handle large volumes of paper. Most regular shredders can only take in a few sheets at a time, so that makes for a pretty inefficient process.

By hiring a professional shredding company, you will rest easy knowing your important files will be collected directly from your shred collection container and shredded securely. It’s clear that destroying documents and digital storage devices should be a regular part of your company’s operations. Make sure you find the most reputable professional shredding and destruction service. They will ensure your items are shredded and destroyed according to the federal guidelines, and they will provide a certificate of destruction to guarantee the shred was executed securely.

An experienced professional shredding service will set a schedule to collect and shred it onsite at your premises. Documents should be shredded in accordance with NAID AAA standards and a Certificate of Destruction will verify the process has been completed correctly.

IntelliShred has been successfully servicing its customers for over two decades. We are able to provide you with efficient and secure shredding services that can be timed to fit your busy schedule. Contact us today to get answers to all of your shredding questions.

Sensitive Documents

Financial institutions, law firms and medical practices are usually the top three types of businesses people tend to think of when it comes to protecting confidential information. Actually, every business, no matter the industry or size, faces the risk of their sensitive documents being stolen.

It’s possible to steal confidential information if there is a ton of paper is lying around your office space. What’s even worse is if those sensitive documents somehow go un-shredded into a garbage can. It’s essential for businesses today to be mindful of how they manage their paper records. If they don’t want their sensitive documents to get into the wrong hands, it’s important they shred or destroy it.

Just about any form of documentation that contains a person’s name, phone number, email, or address on it is ideal for thieves to steal. Not only that, but trade secrets, proprietary research, financial records and other crucial data could easily be stolen – even by an employee.

More than 9 million Americans have their identities stolen every year, totaling losses of $53 billion annually to businesses and financial institutions, according to the Federal Trade Commission.

Conducting a security audit and developing a comprehensive security plan. The audit should examine the facility’s vulnerabilities, looking for ways to maximize safety and security, and minimize risks. Most security companies will conduct this type of audit at no cost.” With the information from your security audit, you can reinforce or add security elements to aspects of your building that might be at risk.

These are two important ways you can help protect your company’s sensitive documents and prevent the high risk of theft:

  1. Hire the Right People
    This is a crucial first step to preventing identity theft – hiring people who have morals and won’t steal. Performing background checks are only half of the equation, the other half is to call into question what they would do in certain situations if they’re hired. Criminals are aware of which organizations perform background checks, and they usually steer clear of them.

 

  1. Have a Highly-Organized Office Space
    Everyone tries to maintain their office by hiring a professional cleaning staff, but cleanliness is not as important as organization of paper documents. You can save your organization from identity theft and eliminate clutter by shredding sensitive documents weekly or monthly. Organization also helps your company’s productivity – if the office is organized, then employees will have an easier time finding files and documents and it will be harder to steal files if they are neatly put away.

 

  1. Implement a Shredding & Destruction Process
    Without a secure shredding and destruction process in place, you are not only putting your business and employees at risk —your customers will be at risk, too. Holding onto any confidential information like credit card numbers, bank accounts, and addresses makes those customers vulnerable to identity theft. Your organization could face severe penalties under the law for mishandling sensitive customer information. Hire a professional shredding service that will handle it for you – it’s the most secure and cost-effective way to dispose of sensitive documents.

Most professional shredding companies will help you create a plan for shredding and destruction. With mobile shredding capabilities, IntelliShred will monitor the process to ensure your sensitive documents are securely destroyed. We offer on-site and/or off site shredding as well as emergency shredding services. Our years of expertise help us renew with our customers because we’re able to successfully help companies protect their private information. Contact us today to find out how we can help your business.

Business Records Retention Schedule

Cleaning up your office space every quarter is necessary in order to keep confidential information secure. Not only does the process of cleaning up create physical space, it allows your company to purge old paper documents and information storage devices that have been sitting around. These items, if left in piles or in unlocked drawers, can end up being prime targets for identity thieves.

The best way to get rid of confidential information that is no longer relevant is to set up a business records retention schedule. This is a process where every so often (could be monthly, quarterly or annually), the company goes through its records (both paper and digital), to determine what is still necessary to keep on file.

Of course, it can be difficult to decide which or what type of confidential information needs to be shredded or destroyed. There may be certain records which need to be kept for a longer period of time, but it’s important that those items which are no longer relevant be shredded or destroyed.

The records management life cycle begins when information is created and ends when the information is destroyed. The ultimate goal is for organizations to monitor the cycle on a regular basis to determine when they should go through a purge of their files.

Specifically, in the healthcare industry, there are state regulations which apply to the length of time you can keep a patient’s medical records. There are record retention guidelines for the healthcare industry, but they vary by state. When the patient is a minor, the company should retain health information until the patient reaches the age of majority (usually 18), plus the period of the statute of limitations.

There are several reasons why a business records retention schedule is important in the healthcare industry:

  • It’s crucial to ensure the availability of timely, relevant data and information for patient care
  • It’s essential to meet federal, state, and local legal requirements regarding confidential data
  • It’s wise to reduce the risk of legal discovery and identity theft

There is not a standardized business records retention schedule that companies and organizations must follow. There are a variety of retention requirements that must be met, but each company can develop their own customized retention program. Individual states have retention requirements that should be used, so you should refer to your state laws for specific requirements.

Remember, confidential information on hard drives and other electronic media also require shredding and destruction. Thieves are using advanced data retrieval software that can recover deleted information, so simply hitting the delete button won’t work. Shredding or destroying the information storage device takes it to another level so that the data is irretrievable.

Although there are many ways to dispose of important documents and electronics, the most secure and cost-effective method would be to hire local document shredding services. Mobile shredding trucks can come straight to your location and perform the shredding right there on site. It truly is the most secure and cost-effective way to shred.

IntelliShred has led the shredding and destruction industry for 20 years. Our team provides customers with confidential data destruction and information security solutions. We are committed to maintaining the highest ethical standards and practices, and outstanding, personalized service. We’re proud to be members of the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID) and we have consistently achieved AAA Certification – the highest level of security in the shredding industry.

Contact us today for more information of how we can help keep your information safe and secure.

Identity Theft At Work

Many people equate the shredding process only with the destruction of business documents, hard copy credit card statements and other important papers. However, in order prevent information data breaches, it’s absolutely necessary to shred and destroy digital storage devices as well, to have more layers of protection.

Today’s business information is mostly stored digitally, but do not assume that it can be kept safe with just a password. It’s best to make sure your company is utilizing firewalls, spyware and other tools to maintain the security of their computers and media storage devices.

Identity thieves have continued to successfully de-fraud corporations, organizations and individuals. Some of the most secure companies have been breached, even the U.S. Government. Businesses which store any kind of confidential, sensitive or personal information, could be held liable if it is stolen.

To combat against identity theft at work, companies should integrate the following three steps:

Shred Regularly

It’s essential for companies to make shredding and destruction part of their normal business operations. The more often shredding takes place, the less risk of important information getting into the wrong hands. If proprietary research, trade secrets, customer information, and other information is stolen, your business could suffer a significant financial loss or a damaged reputation.

Computer Recycling

Most people don’t know this, but some of the basic components in older computers can be reused. Whether it’s the keyboard, the housing or the monitor, all those pieces of plastic, metal and glass can definitely be recycled. Computers also contain certain toxic materials, like lead and cadmium, which should not be thrown away in the garbage and sent to the landfill. Most computer recycling centers have drop-off stations where you can bring your computers to be recycled.

Choose the Right Shredding & Destruction Service

Destroying documents and other storage devices should be a part of every company’s operations. For confidential or sensitive information, shredding may not be adequate. There are professional business shredding services that will adhere to the necessary federal guidelines to make sure your business is compliant. Make sure to choose an accredited service which provides a certificate of destruction to guarantee the process was executed securely.

Shredding and destruction of documents and information storage devices is essential to protect confidential information. Not only does it keep identity thieves away, it reduces the size of the waste, allowing for greater ease of transportation and recycling or disposal.

In order to avoid identity theft at work, hire a shredding and destruction service. Using a mobile shredding paper service will help protect your clients and staff from identity theft. This is the safest and most effective way to avoid security risks. Because of the large number of instances of identity theft at work, it’s wise to put safeguards in place for your business.

IntelliShred is a professional shredding and destruction service which has been awarded the highest security rating, “AAA Certified” by the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID). Contact us today to learn more about our services.

Protect Confidential Information

In today’s world, identity theft has become a regular occurrence – and it’s now easier to steal someone’s confidential information, because it exists in other forms, not only on paper. More companies are digitally storing their customer lists, pricing information, proprietary technology, employee information and other assets and they can be compromised if they’re not protected.

With security threats on the rise, it can be challenging to protect confidential information of your employees and customers. Each year, fraud costs businesses over $3 trillion worldwide – you can’t afford to have your company suffer the consequences of losing important information.

The most common risk that businesses may face is when any employee leaves their organization. Because of the former employee’s access to confidential information, it’s difficult to know if they will disclose it to a competitor or have it fall into the wrong hands. Any company should be careful to limit access to protect confidential information for their employees.

Another important way to protect confidential information is to ensure that computer access is monitored. There should be a process put in place which mandates that hard copies of documents are locked up, and that all electronic copies are password protected. Every employee handbook should contain a confidentiality policy that is specific to the business. This policy should have procedures for how to specifically handle every type of confidential information – paper, digital, and online files.

No matter the amount of policies and procedures, identity theft can still occur, even when you’re monitoring your employees to protect confidential information. The easiest way to eliminate your risk of identity theft is to make sure all paper documents and digital storage devices are destroyed instead of being thrown out or recycled. Every company faces this challenge differently, but for the most part, the most efficient and secure way to do this is to hire a third-party professional shredding company.

This option is the best solution for businesses, because it’s the most secure. Typically, a specially trained, uniformed service representative will come to pick up the items which need to be shredded/destroyed. If the service has a mobile truck, then the items will be shredded on site. If not, they will haul your items away to their shredding facility. Afterwards, there is a Certificate of Destruction which proves the shredding/destruction was done properly and that disposal or recycling of specific materials was done in an environmentally-friendly manner

At IntelliShred, we have the right combination of equipment, tools and staff, capable to meet your product destruction, shredding and disposal needs. With over 30 years of experience within the industry, our team can help you maintain compliance with privacy regulations and ensure your confidentiality is secured. Everything will be destroyed in accordance with all federal and state regulations. Our Certificate of Destruction can be used to show compliance with product destruction recall requirements. Contact us today for more information on how we can help you protect confidential information and avoid the risk of identity theft.

Professional Shredding Company

In today’s corporate environment, there’s been an overwhelming increase in identity theft from businesses – and it has continued to be huge liability issue. Your company’s confidential documents are always at risk, no matter if they’re stored in file cabinets or on digital media devices. It’s always possible for employees, clients or other outside vendors to gain access to that information and exploit it.

The only way to combat this risk and protect your company’s confidential information, is to hire a professional shredding company. There are several credible services out there, but it’s important to consider several factors when you search for a reputable shredding company.

There are special certifications that shredding companies should have under their belt. The one with the highest level of accreditation is the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID). The NAID has the highest level of professional security standards for the industry. The professional shredding company you hire should be a NAID certified shredding company, and must follow their code of ethics and any other industry requirements.

The next important factor in your selection process should be the level of security this professional shredding company has. Document destruction companies should carefully select their employees and provide you with proof of their background checks. You must inquire about their shredding process and ask for a step by step description of how it works, even down to the type of containers they use for transporting documents prior to shredding. If your company deals with medical information, it’s crucial that you hire a document shredding company that’s in compliance with current HIPAA requirements.

A professional shredding company is equipped to handle the destruction of tons of classified and confidential documents for businesses on-site. When you select a shredding service, make sure they guarantee your documents will be destroyed on-site.

There are other companies that only do off-site shredding – they physically remove your documents from your business and then transports them to their shredding facility. With this type of service, you run the risk of your documents being misplaced, lost, or falling into the wrong hands. It’s much wiser to hire a shredding company that provides on-site shredding and emergency shredding services.

Corporate shredding services must have state of the art shredding equipment available to you. They should handle way more than just paper shredding – they should have the ability to destroy discs of all formats, media components and other devices. As you search for the perfect shredding company, be sure to look for one that provides full-service.

IntelliShred has been a shredding industry leader since 1999. We have pride in our confidential data destruction and the other information security solutions that we offer. We are committed to maintaining the highest ethical standards and practices, and outstanding, personalized service. We’re proud to be members of the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID) and we have consistently achieved AAA Certification – the highest level of security in the shredding industry.

As an experienced, professional shredding company can help your business block the risk of identity theft. We have the latest in shredding equipment and the capacity to recycle paper, floppy drives, CD’s and DVD’s, Video Cassettes, Microfilm, Microfiche and much more. Contact us today and let us help you keep your confidential information safe from harm’s way.

Corporate Identity Theft

Consumers can be a prime target for identity theft, but most business owners assume that they won’t face the same level of risk. Even with security measures in place to safeguard your client’s confidential information, corporate identity theft can occur. The more you can do to protect your organization’s information from theft, the better.

Most often, corporate identity theft includes a breach of personal information on clients or employees. However, it can also include the theft of a company’s proprietary information, credit information, bank statements and other sensitive data. Although recycling paper helps the environment, certain documents should never be thrown into the trash or recycling bin.

If confidential information falls into the wrong hands, your business could suffer immensely. The thief can impersonate you and others within your business to steal from the company. Whether it’s running up credit card bills, purchasing equipment, applying for business loans, or using information for their personal gain, corporate identity thieves show no mercy.

There are many types of corporate identity theft, but the most common is a cyberattack. This type of attack involves a hacker that is able to steal company information by hacking into a server or individual computer. Of course, this is done without the organization’s knowledge, in the same way data breaches affect consumers.

Other types of theft include when physical company documents or records are stolen. It can happen either from within the business at the hands of an employee or even if paperwork is mishandled or improperly discarded.

Regularly changing logins, passwords and other methods for accessing corporate bank accounts, credit cards and other important files can help prevent corporate identity theft. Company employees can sometimes be duped into logging into a fake website which matches the one they normally log into. After they log in, the hacker can easily steal information to get account numbers, trade secrets, proprietary formulas and more.

Phishing is another way that identity thieves will try. An employee may receive company emails that appear to be from a trusted source but contain fake links. Once these links are clicked upon, hackers can access to the company’s network. Phishing emails can also dupe employees into providing logins and other sensitive information.

Any size company can be vulnerable to corporate identity theft, so it’s absolutely crucial to put safeguards in place that will protect your business. To ensure that your company does not fall prey to criminals, be sure to update safety procedures, train your team on how to spot phishing attempts and definitely implement a shredding policy and schedule.

IntelliShred has been awarded the highest security rating, “AAA Certified” by the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID). Contact us today on how we can help save your business from corporate identity theft.

What To Shred

Most of us know that we should shred our personal documents. However, you might not know just how easy it is for identity thieves these days, even with strip cutting.

We all have so many documents. It’s all too easy to overlook a certain kind of document that seems innocuous.

This is why, to drive down identity theft, everyone should learn what to shred.

So we’re going to do the public a service and list the top 5 things that everyone should shred religiously.

  1. Your Personal Information

Shred anything with your:

  • account numbers
  • passwords
  • signatures

Destroy monthly bills that contain your:

  • full name
  • address
  • signature
  • account details

The most important things to shred include:

  • bank correspondences
  • expired identity cards
  • expired credit and debit cards
  • tax related documents that are older than 7 years old
  1. Your Social Security Number

Your social security number is as good as gold to identity thieves. This is why you should destroy any unnecessary documents containing your social security number.

What if you notice that there’s a persistent source of documents containing it? In that case, it’s worthwhile to ask the provider if they can withhold your social security number from printed forms as an extra precaution.

  1. Utility And Credit Card Bills

Your bills and account information won’t open as many doors as your social security number will, but a clever thief can still use them against you.

It’s important to remember that any of your financial information can be used against you. This includes your utility bills and credit card bills.

When thinking about what to shred, always remember that this sort of information is useful to thieves. Therefore it should be shredded religiously.

  1. Credit Card Offers

Yes, even those annoying spammy credit card offers you receive in the mail must be taken out right away and shredded promptly.

Why is this necessary you ask?

It’s a sad fact of life that identity theft is most often perpetuated by those who know us well. This includes friends, neighbors, and even family members.

Any of the above people can fill out one of these forms, claim your new credit card and then proceed to destroy your credit rating without your knowledge.

  1. Expired Or Cancelled Credit Cards

It may come as a surprise to some, but thieves actually love finding expired or cancelled credit cards. Why?

Well, oftentimes renewed credit cards have the same account number as the expired or cancelled card. Often times the only difference between the two cards is the expiration date. This makes stealing your new account easy.

Even cancelled credit card accounts provide a way for thieves to gain access to your new account, or to open a new account under your name.

As you can see, the number of ways that identity thieves can use your personal information is scary. The best way to protect your identity is to learn what to shred and then shred religiously. If you have too many things to shred on your own, our mobile paper shredding service can help.

Destroy Documents

Identity Theft Increasing

Why is it important to destroy documents? There are two main reasons: legality and identity theft.

In 2014, about 7% of U.S. residents (age 16 and over) were victims of identity theft. As troubling as this fact is, this was way back in 2014; the statistics for identity theft have only continued to rise every year.

Why Destroy Documents?

The purpose of this post is to give a brief overview for the general public, as well as for companies and small businesses, about why we should destroy documents.

In short – anybody, big or small, can be a victim of identity theft. And besides that, we all must follow the law.

Avoid Identity Theft

Take this advice to heart and you’ll greatly minimize risk of identity theft.

There are other forms of identity theft, but paper identity theft is still prevalent because too many people are careless.

Tearing your bank statement in half and tossing it in the trash just won’t cut it (pun not intended). Old fashioned dumpster diving identity theft is still prevalent, and an identity thief can easily piece together documents disposed of in this manner.

Stay On The Right Side Of The Law

There may be laws where you live or work that require you to destroy documents. Be sure to do a Google search to learn your state’s laws about how to dispose of professional documents.

Certain companies like banks and health care facilities are required by the government to shred their employees and clients documents. Other people and entities, both large and small, should follow the same procedure.

Here are 3 things you should keep in mind when you’re ready to destroy documents:

  1. Learn The Laws

One example of such a law related to healthcare is HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). If you deal with employees’ personal medical information, then you should know about HIPPA. It applies to any healthcare professional who comes in contact with others personal medical information.

  1. Come Up With A Plan

Legally you must protect your customers and employees data, and you should also have written confidential shredding plans for doing so.

  1. Consider Professional Paper Shredding

If you have a lot of documents to shred and want to be more careful, then choose a service to come to your office to shred and destroy documents.

After the documents are destroyed, they will be removed and then taken off site to be incinerated. This is the safest and most convenient method to destroy documents in large quantities.