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Questions to Ask When Choosing a Document Shredding Vendor

Destruction of information is a key component of a comprehensive records management program; however, it’s tough keeping up with the volume of records that need to be disposed of in a secure and timely manner. Office shredders rarely live up to the job as they are slow, prone to malfunction, and can take up precious staff time. As a result, most businesses that attempt to handle the shredding of documents and files internally eventually look for a more effective outsourced solution. Professional document shredding services provide the following benefits:

  • fulfillment of retention and disposal schedules and policies,
  • more precise destruction,
  • documented and verifiable disposal processes,
  • tighter chain of custody for confidential information, and
  • minimized risk of data breaches.

The key to all of the above is finding the right shredding company. Asking the right questions will allow you to choose a document shredding vendor who will best meet your business’ specific needs and requirements.

Does the Shredding Service Meet Privacy Protection Requirements?

These days, with the incidences of data breaches at an all time high, there are numerous pieces of legislation that have been enacted to address the protection of private information. Some of these are:

  • HIPAA,
  • Sarbanes Oxley,
  • the FACTA Disposal Rule, and
  • the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.

Your preferred document shredding provider should be conversant in each of these laws and should also be able to outline detailed procedures regarding privacy protection during the destruction process. Ask your vendor what training their employees have received with regards to the various regulations.

What Are the Destruction Services and Practices of Your Shredding Vendor?

You should be able to assess the destruction services and practices of potential shredding vendors. It’s important to know how, when, and where your confidential information will be destroyed. Some providers will offer a variety of services that allow you to choose an option that best meets your business needs and comfort level. Such various services may include:

  • off-site shredding,
  • on-site shredding,
  • one-time shred purges,
  • drop-off shredding, and
  • security collection containers.

In the instance of off-site shredding and drop-off shredding, your vendor should be able to give you a timeframe for when your confidential information will be destroyed. Remember, the longer your records wait to be shredded, the greater risk of exposure. As a result, it’s best to choose a company that provides a 24-hour destruction period.

Is Your Shredded Material Recycled?

Your business probably places a high importance on recycling, and, fortunately, properly shredded documents can be safely recycled. When interviewing shredding companies, ask what recycling policies they have in place for destroyed documents. Find out what percentage of shredded material is recycled and if that material is shipped to an authorized paper recycler.

Records Management Center provides businesses throughout Augusta, Evans, Thomson, and Martinez, GA; Aiken, SC; and the Central Savannah River Area with professional shredding and information destruction solutions. To find out how we can help your business, please contact us by phone or fill in the form on the page.