Shred those Documents, Save that Info!

Everyone knows, at this point in the information age, that guarding your personal information is incredibly important. There are identity thieves just waiting for you to give them an opportunity to take what is yours, make it theirs, and promptly run amok with what they consider free money and credit. So you may have heard that it is a good idea to tear up your bank statements and other mail containing sensitive personal information before throwing it away. Unfortunately, this may not be enough to protect you.

See, the idea behind tearing up your sensitive mail before throwing it away is that you scramble the identifying numbers that make them useful to you personally. Odds are that if you just tear your mail in half, or even into quarters, you are barely scrambling any number sequence contained on the page, if at all. This is why proper document shredding has become so important these days. In order to most effectively scramble, or in the best case scenario completely destroy,  your personal information, it is important to properly shred them. Many businesses offer this service for you, as they often have expensive cross-cutting paper shredders. These cross-cut shredders do more than just cut up your documents, they shred them into miniscule little squares which are all but impossible to discern anything important from.

Even the most determined identity thief will not even bother to try with documents so shredded. Imagine trying to find a handful of puzzle pieces in a room full of puzzle pieces that have had their edges shorn off, and then fitting those together, should you manage to find them. Only in this case, the puzzle pieces are centimeters wide and are mixed up with several pounds of paper cut the same way.

Document shredding is not important to only individuals looking to protect themselves from identity theft. Even large businesses must make sure to properly destroy the personal information of their clients when they dispose of them. Their customers and clients trust them to properly safeguard their personal information. The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, also known more briefly as FACTA, is a strong federal law that ensures the safety of said information. Any business that handles sensitive personal information, such as medical records, credit billing information, and most importantly social security information, is required by this act to “take reasonable measures to protect against unauthorized access or use of the information in connection with its disposal.” Therefore these companies must either burn, or in the case of the carbon-monoxide-conscious, properly shred all personally sensitive information pertaining to their clients during disposal. Should someone’s information be gleaned from this company’s records due to improper disposal, that someone could potentially sue the company for their neglect.

So whether you are just someone who wants to keep themselves safe from potential thieves or a big-time business looking to keep themselves and their customers out of financial ruin, everyone has a use and need for document shredding. Why not come to professionals like those at Tarheel Imaging to make sure that it gets done right the first time?