What is the Shredding Chain of Custody Process?

Chain of Custody (CoC) is the paper or digital trail from the first enquiry to the control, transfer and last stage of downloading a Certificate of Destruction. When it comes to shredding of documents, media, products or packaging it is important for the data controller to map where data is being passed and to ensure security measures are in place to protect the data. Read on to find out more.

What is the Chain of Custody and why is it important?

A secure ‘chain of custody’ requires that from the moment sensitive information (such as documents, paperwork or media devices) is collected from a data controller (by a data processor like Topwood), the transfer and custody is recorded so that it can be proved no third party has accessed that data.

The importance of a secure Chain of Custody is increasing due to the upcoming changes in the new Data Protection Act being implementing in 2018. It is essential that data controllers know exactly where their data is passing through in order to comply with the regulations and an individual’s ‘right to be forgotten’.

It is best practice to keep the number of stages in the destruction chain procedure as short as possible. At Topwood, the shredding process is kept to a minimal in order to eliminate the risk of a data breach. We recommend on-site shredding for both document and media as this takes out the hassle of auditing the off-site shredding facilities. See the difference between on-site and off-site shredding here.

Watch our video below to see our Chain of Custody process.

Once we understand your shredding requirements we will email a quote to you. Upon acceptance, a work order will be created confirming all the details. The shortest and safest chain of custody is when one of our mobile shred trucks securely destroy documents on-site at your offices while you watch with our shredding truck.

Once the shredding is completed you will be asked by our driver to sign an electronic device. This will send an e-receipt to your email inbox with both your signature and our driver’s signature. The e-receipt will have a link for your to securely download your Certificate of Destruction through our website. This will also give you access to a Waste transfer Note (as required by law). The next step is the invoice, which will be emailed direct from our system at the end of the month.


Related articles:

Certificate of Destruction Explained

5 Step Process to securely destroy your data

How to protect your business against fraud

How long should I keep documents for?