Companies produce many documents during their day-to-day operations, some of which may contain confidential information. Even when documents are no longer required it is still the responsibility of the individual company to dispose of the material securely. The safest way of disposing of such material, once it is no longer in active use, is by shredding.
However, shredding alone is not adequate for highly confidential material, for which secure shredding is required. Secure shredding can be carried out on-site or off-site at special centres, which are protected by security systems.
Secure shredding processes should conform to the BS EN15713-2009 security standard and customers should be provided with transparent and full audit and management reports. The BS EN15713-2009 security standard sets out the key requirements that a professional destruction company should fulfil.
These standards not only cover the specific shred sizes for each type of material, but also the installation of monitored intruder alarms and CCTV, as well as the training of staff. The guide also covers the obligations a professional destruction company has with regard to the security of the vehicles used to collect the material to be destroyed and any on-site destruction vehicles.
Secure shredding involves not only the shredding of paperwork, but also the shredding of any other media that may contain confidential data, such as CDs, hard drives, videos, off-spec products and files. Companies may also provide on-site secure consoles to collect and securely store the documents and other material for shredding. These containers are locked to ensure that there is no unauthorised access to the material.