Is shredding really necessary? After a long day of organizing your paperwork, you’ve got a big pile of old utility bills, credit card receipts, bank statements and personal papers that you no longer need to keep. Why not just toss them in the recycle bin and forget about them? Haven’t you done enough for one day?
Well, yes and no. Recycling is a great idea, but not for papers that contain private or confidential information. Once you put your recycle can out at the curb, your papers are fair game for anyone who wants to dig through your trash. Most identity theft comes about in just this way. Identity thieves get the information they need to fill out a credit card application in your name or get access to your bank account. All from information that you’ve given them. This is where shredding comes in. It’s hard to steal information that has been diced up into tiny pieces.
So what are your shredding options? One easy at-home solution is to buy a little shredder of your own and shred personal papers as you go. Several brands of at-home shredders are available for less than a hundred dollars. This is the best option if you just have the occasional credit card offer to shred, but the low power home shredders do not work well with high volumes of material. If you need to shred lots of sheets on a daily basis, the shredder’s blades could become jammed, causing the motor to burn out. Maybe the answer is to get a more powerful shredder or maybe it is time to trust your shredding to a professional.
Low cost shredding is available at a variety of places. Before leaving important papers behind, make sure that someone takes charge of them and guarantees their safety. Do not just leave boxes behind unattended. Check with office supply stores to see if they have shredding services available. Some stores will shred a small amount of paper while you wait or securely store your larger boxes for pickup by a shredding company.
Check your local government websites for shredding events, especially around Earth Day. Usually shredding companies will accept boxes for free or low cost shredding as part of the festivities. Many of these companies then send the shredded paper off for recycling.
Be safe when you are organizing your documents. Always remember that thieves haven’t read it if you shred it. And if you need help deciding what to shred and what to keep, we are always happy to help.
It's as simple as that.