The number of firms who claim to offer 'free’ document shredding for sensitive commercial waste has grown in recent years. Beware...these firms regard shredding services as a useful bolt-on to their existing service portfolio and may not have your data security as their primary concern. There is a real risk in using free services and the potential costs dwarf the charges of using a professional data destruction service. We explain why...
These issues are becoming more important and significant with the introduction of the General Data Protection Act coming into force in May 2018. According to the new regulations, data processors must be able to prove where they hold personal information and when an individual requests that their details be deleted, the data processor must be able to prove they have safely ‘deleted’ or destroyed their information as part of ‘the right to be forgotten’. Non-compliance can result in huge fines by the Information Commissioner’s Office.
To make sure you are compliant with UK Laws, you should destroy personal information using a professional shredding company that is security certified to ISO 27001 to ensure your documents are being handled by security vetted staff and being destroyed in a legal and safe manner. Unlike subcontracted firms, professional on-site shredding firms should provide a certificate of destruction as part of a full audit trail. Mobile on-site document shredding is the best method to ensure an efficient shredding process as well as ensuring you are complying with UK law and reducing the risk of a security data breach.
We have compiled a quick comparison below to show the dangers of free document shredding companies. Click on the image below to expand the table.
Topwood hold free community shred events across the North West that provide the public with the opportunity to shred their confidential documents for free, where you can witness it, and receive the necessary paperwork afterwards.
These community events are popular in the USA and are gaining popularity in the UK. The free shredding events are held by professional shredding companies that shred your documents in front of you in a prearranged location. These events do provide the free shredding service without the dangers listed above.
Other than the obvious reason that it is FREE, there are other benefits of our free shredding events. At Topwood we often join up with local charities as part of our community shred events, in order to raise money for a chosen charity. Our last free shred event raised just under £300 to go to local charity Home Start in Wrexham.
Another reason we hold free community shred events is to promote awareness of ID theft and fraud. Data breaches and identity theft is a reoccurring topic in the news, which has been caused by people not taking the best action to protect their information. Document and media shredding is an active preventative measure to help the public fight against security risks of their personal information.
If you would like more information about our next free shred event visit our website and follow our social media for updates.