Today, every business manager knows that document destruction is a vital security measure. All kinds of confidential information, from a new marketing plan to a customer’s credit card number, can fall into the wrong hands unless the document is destroyed as quickly and thoroughly as possible.What is less well known is that document shredding helps the environment. Beyond the fact that shredded paper can be easily recycled, shredded paper has uses that ordinary recycled paper does not. For example, it can be turned into mulch or substituted for Styrofoam packing peanuts. It’s more suitable for making new paper plates and towels than ordinary paper.
Even though wood pulp for paper comes from specially planted forests, making virgin paper has a terrible environmental impact. Unlike recycling plants, paper mills use large quantities of toxic chemicals. Recycling plants are not only much cleaner than paper mills, but they also use much less energy and water, and create far less air pollution.Discarded business papers are a big component of the waste stream. In fact, most office workers use about 10,000 sheets of copy paper every year. For every ton of paper that is shredded and recycled, 17 trees, 7010 gallons of water and 4100 kilowatts of electricity are saved. Air pollution is reduced by 60 lbs, and 2.5 cubic yards of landfill are spared for other purposes.
When looking for a document destruction company, try to find one that guarantees that all of your paper will be recycled. Some firms will also guarantee that they will recycle as much of your electronic waste—CDs, microfiche and hard drives—as they possibly can.Of course, security still comes first. Look for a document shredding company that is accredited by the NAID, an international association of information destruction services.
A good document shredding company will supply you with locked bins for your office, so that discarded papers will be locked away until the scheduled shredding appointment. They should also permit you to watch the destruction of your papers, so you can be sure nothing is tampered with. Afterwards, a responsible company, such as Absolute Destruction (you can find them at http://absolutedestruction.ca/burlington-oakville.php), will give you a timed and dated certificate of destruction. That way, if there are any questions about what happened to the documents, you will be able to prove that you had them disposed of properly.Be especially careful if you have electronic documents to destroy. Newer hard drives are almost impossible to completely erase. In fact, if you put an “erased” hard drive into new disc housing, it may be very easy to read what is on it. The best companies will physically destroy the hard drive, and then find a way to safely recycle it.