Not Destroying Confidential Documents? That Could Be a Big Problem!

It happens to the best of us: we get caught up in our work and forget to shred confidential documents. Sometimes those documents just pile up on a desk. Other times those documents end up getting covered up by other papers and find their way into the garbage or recycling bin along with the non-confidential documents. It’s a common occurrence, but one that could have significant consequences.

If the wrong papers get in the wrong hands, you could be dealing with a myriad of issues such as:

Identity theft. Many companies deal with documents that contain personally identifiable information and protected health information (PHI). Social security numbers, date and place of birth, addresses and driver’s license numbers can all be used to steal the identities of you, your staff or your clients.

Leaked trade secrets. Every company has information they don’t want getting out to the public or their competition. If confidential contracts or budget information doesn’t get destroyed like it should, there’s a risk of it leaking, with damaging effects to your company.

Corporate espionage. You need to be wary about the possibility of someone in your company being out to make a quick buck. The last thing you want is that kind of employee stumbling upon a document that could have monetary value when sold to the competition. They could use that information to tear down your company.

Non-compliance with regulations. There are regulations which mandate that certain documents be destroyed in a certain way. HIPAA and HITECH regulations obligate that all documents and media containing PHI be shredded in a manner such that it cannot be read or reconstructed. If you don’t destroy documents in the guidelines set forth in these and other regulations, you’ll be non-compliant.

Consequences like these can occur when documents aren’t shredded, but also when they’re not shredded correctly. Most common office shredders don’t thoroughly destroy these documents in a way that they can’t be reassembled. The solution to these challenges is to use a professional records management and destruction firm. At Stevens & Stevens we schedule shred services via a secure collection container that your staff can use to easily and securely dispose of day-to-day paperwork from your office.

Once your schedule is decided, screened and trained personnel will arrive at your facility, collect your confidential information and securely transport it back to our plant-based shredding facility. After your documents have been shredded, we’ll provide you with a Certificate of Destruction. This secure and verifiable process offers the most cost-effective method for securely disposing of your private and confidential information. It’s something you don’t want to leave to chance. Learn more here.

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