According to the Gartner Group, a technology research group, “More than £1.6 million worth of card fraud occurs on UK plastic cards every day”. The BBC reported in 2010 that identity fraud is costing the UK economy £2.7bn a year. Information is priceless To a criminal your personal information is priceless. This information can be used to obtain credit cards, open bank accounts, obtain loans and Documents such as driving licenses and passports.
Protecting yourself and protecting your data.
As part of the advice offered by the www.identitytheft.org.uk website they discuss “keeping you documents safe“. In this section it is suggested you shred any unwanted documents, including bank statements, credit card statements, bills, receipts and even unwanted mail that contains your name and address.
Not all Shredders are equal
When selecting a shredder you need first to decide how sensitive the data you are destroying is.
- Strip-cut shredders, the least secure, use rotating knives to cut narrow strips as long as the original sheet of paper. Such strips can be reassembled by a determined and patient investigator or adversary, as the product (the destroyed information) of this type of shredder is the least randomized. It also creates the highest volume of waste inasmuch as the chad has the largest surface area and is not compressed.
- Cross-cut or confetti-cut shredders use two contra-rotating drums to cut rectangular, parallelogram, or diamond-shaped (or lozenge) shreds.
- Particle-cut shredders create tiny square or circular pieces.
- Cardboard shredders are designed specifically to shred corrugated material into either strips or a mesh pallet.
- Disintegrators and granulators repeatedly cut the paper at random until the particles are small enough to pass through a mesh.
- Hammermills pound the paper through a screen.
- Pierce and Tear Rotating blades pierce the paper and then tear it apart.
- Grinders A rotating shaft with cutting blades grinds the paper until it is small enough to fall through a screen.
There are numerous standards for the security levels of paper shredders, including:
- DIN 32757
- Level 1 = 12 mm strips OR 11 x 40mm particles
- Level 2 = 6 mm strips OR 8 x 40mm particles
- Level 3 = 2 mm strips OR 4 x 30mm particles (Confidential)
- Level 4 = 2 x 15 mm particles (Commercially Sensitive)
- Level 5 = 0.8 x 12 mm particles (Top Secret or Classified)
- Level 6 = 0.8 x 4 mm particles (Top Secret or Classified) (unofficial extension of the DIN 32757-1 standard)
Now you’ve decided on the level of destruction for your shredded documents you should also consider the volume of the documents to be shredded and the frequency of use, as this will also determine the size and type of shredder suitable for your requirements. For a comprehensive selection of shredders starting at just £17.50 then head over to OfficeGopher.co.uk