Houston Document Destruction
Privacy Protection is the law. Various laws mandate the destruction of information about your customers, employees, or patients. Document destruction allows you to be compliant with those laws.
Those laws include HIPAA, GLBA, and FACTA.
||HIPAA - Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act
||GLBA - Gramm Leach Bliley Act, also known as the Financial Modernization Act of 1999
||FACTA - The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003
To protect yourself, your employees, and your customers/patients from identity theft, never discard information which contains personal information such as SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBERS, NAMES, ADDRESSES, etc. Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the U.S. It is vital you destroy outdated:
- Payroll Records
- Student Records
- Insurance & medical records (See HIPAA)
- Credit Applications (See FACTA and GLB)
- Job applications
- Tax returns
- Canceled checks
- Drafts of any of the above
By the simple act of discarding data in the trash, the court system holds that the information is NOT valuable to you and therefore the court system will not support the protection of that data. If the data is taken from the dumpster, the court will not punish the dumpster diver for the simple act of taking the data.
Your trash is considered by business espionage professionals as the single most available source of competitive and private information from the average business. This includes incidental records such as drafts of proposals, routing slips, etc. The information, which needs protection and could be in your trash now includes:
- Customer lists
- Business plans
- Designs for new products
- Financial reports
- Payroll reports
- Cancelled checks
Out-sourced shredding is more cost effective than in-house shredding.
It is very expensive to have your own employees shred paper with portable office shredders. Office shredders often shred between 6 and 15 pages per minute and suggest for each three to five minutes of operation, you let it cool off for a couple minutes. If you should be shredding over 2,000 sheets per month, you could be saving money by having an outside service shred your material. (see calculations below). If you shred less than 2,000 sheets per month, you should consider a purge service.
You save money by using an outside document shredding company because:
- You don't have to pay your employees to shred the paper
- You don't have to purchase and maintain your own shredding equipment
- You don't have to remove paperclips and staples
- You don't have to clean up the dust from shredding
- You don't have to pay for the cost of disposal of the paper
Direct Cost of Shredding Internally
2,000 sheets divided by 15 sheets per minute is 2 hours 15 minutes. If the shredding person makes as little as $8 per hour plus 25% for taxes and benefits, that means the direct cost of internally shredding 2,000 pages is $22.22 per month. When you add in the cost of the in-house shredder, disposal of bags of paper, dust clean up and disruptions from noise, you are better off using a professional, bonded document destruction company.
Internal personnel should not be responsible for destroying certain information. Common sense dictates that payroll information and materials that involve labor relations or legal affairs should not be entrusted to entry level employees for destruction. Beyond that, competition sensitive information is best protected from them as well. It has been establihed, time and again, that employees are the most likely to realize the value of certain information to competitors. Additionally, lower wage employees often have the economic motivation to capitalize on their access to information. The only acceptable alternatives are to have the materials destroyed under the supervision of upper management or by a carefully selected document destruction company.
Information that should be shredded is often just thrown away. One person who was responsible for shredding highly confidential intellectual property told me that instead of shredding the material, they simply "tore them in two and threw them in the trash.” If you give an employee a task that is too unpleasant, eventually they will stop completing the task.
We serve Houston, Texas and the surrounding communities offering a
variety of document shredding services.