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Certificate of Destruction: What It Is & Why It Matters

why certificate of destruction matters

There comes a time in every business or organization when you need to throw away confidential information. However, due to the sensitive matter the documents or materials hold, you can’t simply toss them in the trash. You must get rid of the information so that it is wholly unattainable—meaning you must destroy it. In addition to that, you might also need a certificate of destruction, so it’s crucial to understand what it is and why it matters.

What Is a Certificate of Destruction?

A certificate of destruction is a document that contains a plethora of information regarding the destruction of your data. Usually, the paper will include details like:

  • Transfer of custody
  • Transaction number
  • Date, time, and location of destruction
  • Witnesses and their signatures
  • Acceptance of fiduciary responsibility

You might find yourself squinting sideways at the idea of needing a form that states all the other documents you got rid of no longer exist. Moreover, it may seem like overkill to require such a detailed account. However, it is not, and in some cases, it is necessary; more on the purpose of a certificate of destruction and why it matters below.

Why It Matters

If you destroy documents containing personal data, corporate confidences, and protected information, you will usually need a certificate of destruction. Without a paper trail, there is no way to tell whether you correctly destroyed the data with absolute certainty. Moreover, in the event of an audit, your word won’t be enough.

Privacy & Protection

Privacy and protection laws exist to protect all confidential information. As such, these laws will require any organization that hosts personal knowledge to make that data completely indecipherable when the time comes. What you destroy and when you destroy it will depend on documents and specific retention guidelines.

A certificate of destruction provides you with peace of mind as it proves you are following the rules when it comes to destroying protected information. Are you looking for product destruction services? Intellishred is here to help you destroy confidential information in a way that abides by privacy and protection laws.