Shredding confidential and sensitive documents is an important activity for businesses
of all sizes and all households.
The rise of identity theft and fraud means that it is more important than ever to shred
your confidential waste effectively and to invest in a shredder that you can rely on to
shred your sensitive waste to a secure level.
Shredders are also available to dispose securely of your multimedia and CD waste.
The purchase of a multimedia shredder could prove invaluable to your business, if
your workforce regularly need to download sensitive and confidential information to
disc and then find a way to dispose of it safely and securely.
Shredders are graded according to how securely they shred your confidential paper
and multimedia waste. Consumers should seek to purchase a shredder from a
reputable supplier who lists the shredding security level of their machines to ensure
they are purchasing the most suitable shredding for their requirements.
A shredder's DIN level indicates the level of shredding security the machine provides.
There are currently six levels within the DIN scale, which begins with Level 1, as
being suitable for documents of low level security and the disposal of general waste.
Level 2 works at a slightly more secure level, with both Levels 1 and 2 shredding
waste into long strips through machines known as strip cut shredders. Level 3
shredders can be either strip cut or cross cut shredders and are ideal for shredding a
range of confidential documents.
Levels 4 to 6 of shredding security are only available via cross cut shredders and are
for the specialised disposal of commercially sensitive, classified and top secret
documents. DIN Level 6 is currently the highest available level of shredding machine
grade and is backed by the U.S government for the disposal of the most sensitive and
The DIN shredder grading levels are not currently established as an industry standard
in the UK, so consumers are strongly advised to approach shredding machine dealers
who already operate the DIN grading system to be assured of purchasing a suitably
secure shredder for their needs. The DIN standard originated in Germany, where DIN
stands for Deutsches Institut fűr Normung (German Institute for
Standardisation), which is the equivalent of the British Standards Institute (BSI).
Cross cut shredders are ideal for the office environment, as they shred to a more
secure level than strip cut shredders and also reduce the shredded bulk of paper your
documents create to roughly a quarter of the volume of shredded waste generated by a
strip cut shredder.
Leading brands of shredder include Acco Rexel, Dahle, EBA, Fellowes, GBC, HSM,
IDEAL, Intimus, Kobra, Martin Yale and Schleicher. All leading shredding machine
manufacturers offer a range of machines to suit differing requirements, including the
shredding of multimedia waste. Shredders can come in a variety of sizes to suit
different environments and needs, including deskside shredders, small office
shredders, large office shredders, heavy duty paper shredders, commercial shredders,
automatic shredders, and high security shredders.
The variety of materials that can be shredded securely by differing levels of machine
include paper, cardboard, CDs, DVDs, multimedia items, A3 and large size paper.
When purchasing a shredder it makes good sense to evaluate your secure waste
disposal needs and then approach a quality supplier, who can guide you towards the
right shredder for your requirements.
Well-designed shredders are highly safe machines and some of the leading
manufacturers offer a range of security features as standard on many of their
shredding machines, including Fellowes - who feature a heat-sensing device on some
shredders designed to sense when a body part is too near the shredder's throat and
cease operation of the shredder immediately.
The Mercury range of shredders from Acco Rexel are fitted with patented Anti-Jam
Technology, whereby a machine's paper entry area is illuminated with a green light
when the shredder is operating correctly and a red light when too much paper has
been inserted into the shredder for it to operate safely or effectively.
When researching the purchase of a shredder for your office or home, it is important
to determine the level of shredding security and capacity you require to suit your
needs. Questions to ask during this process include: What documents will you need to
shred? How often will you need to use your shredder? How many users will access
your shredder regularly? How securely do you need to shred your documents? Do you
regularly need to securely dispose of sensitive multimedia waste, such as CDs? How
fast do you need your shredder to be? How frequently will you use your shredder on a
daily basis? How much room do you have to house your new shredding machine?
With identity theft and fraud rising year-on-year, it is essential to make the right
choice when investing in a piece of shredding equipment. If you consider the sensitive
waste your workplace produces to be highly confidential, then investment in a
suitable high level shredder will be an investment you will never regret.
Providing a well-designed and easy to operate shredder for your colleagues and staff,
alongside outlining a clear company policy for shredding documents, will enable
everyone to participate in consistent housekeeping procedures within your company
and keep sensitive company information safe and secure.