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A Guide To Preventing Fraud In Your Business

Around one in four small businesses are affected by some kind of fraud every year. It’s a very serious problem that causes billions of pounds in losses, and most businesses have come into contact with a form of fraud, even if the situation didn’t happen to them. While many businesses are becoming more savvy, some don’t believe that they will fall victim to any type of fraudulent interactions.

 

To prevent fraud in your business, you must first identify where you might be at risk. Risks can come from customers, employees, suppliers, and even your business assets. It’s not just up to your office to be good at identifying risks – everyone involved in your business should be able to at least attempt identifying any fraud risks.

 

Customers and fraud

For businesses that deal with customers in-person, there is the issue of counterfeit money being used in transactions. Even if your business only accepts card payments online, fake credit or debit cards can be used, or even stolen cards that don’t belong to the person making the purchase.

Identity theft is a huge issue in the world, so even training your staff members in a few basic ways to spot a bad payment or counterfeit money will help keep your business running. Customers can, in this situation, refer to any person who does not directly work for your company, but still has financial dealings with you.

 

Employees and fraud

When we mention employees and fraud, we definitely aren’t implying that any employees in a business would try to be fraudulent. However, employees are often the target of scams and fraud, because many employees are often the first line of contact in a company and trained to deal with their own situations. Fraud is becoming more sophisticated, and employees are vulnerable to false payments, embezzlement, information theft, and many other issues.

Employees can leave their company susceptible to fraud if they do not have the tools to battle fraud attempts. Always train your employees in the newest fraud techniques, and how to identify fraudulent emails and phone calls.

 

Training to prevent fraud

Most fraudulent activity can be spotted by putting a few effective processes in place to help minimise or catch illegal behaviour. First, employees must know what to look for, then, they need to know what to do next.

The most common types of fraud in business are those that involve finances – such as accounts payable and accounting issues. To commit fraud, a person must have access to money and accounts in order to make their false payment, steal someone’s identity, or do something similar. Train your employees to ensure they understand your company’s procedures, especially in regard to any payments that need to be made to or from the company. Every employee should follow your company guidelines to the letter and should be able to easily detect spam emails and fake accounts being used for purchases.

 

Remember: If something doesn’t look right, it probably isn’t.

 

Of course, keeping a firm handle on your paperwork can go a long way to preventing fraud in and outside your business. Paperwork theft is still one of the biggest causes of identity theft and fraud in this country, particularly from business owners who throw paperwork with sensitive data on it straight into the recycling bin. If you’d like to know more about how you can protect your business from fraud and still get your recycling fix, just get in touch with us today.

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8 Tips For A Greener Office

Recent news of the impact we have on the planet has made most of us sit up and take notice of our own recycling habits. While it’s easy to see the ways in which we can make a difference at home, it’s often a different story in the workplace.

 

There are many benefits to going green in the office, including reduced costs and enhanced productivity. It can also improve the way customers and clients view your company, and who wouldn’t want that?

 

If this sounds appealing to you read on for our 8 top tips to help you go greener in the office.

 

  • Cutting down on the number of printed documents is an easy way to begin your journey to a greener office. Take a moment before printing to consider if you need a paper copy of this document. If the answer is no, easy, don’t print. If you’re not sure, try not printing and see if you come back to do it later. You can also make the documents you do need to print greener by printing double-sided or using the eco-mode on your printer.

 

 

  • Save energy by turning off all non-essential appliances before leaving the office. If you usually hit standby make sure you are fully shutting down instead. This doesn’t only apply for home time, but should also be best practice for when you’re leaving for a long meeting or lunch too.

 

 

  • Make recycling easy by creating a station with clear information. If you provide staff with a simple way to sort their rubbish they will be more inclined to do so on a regular basis. Think about designating sections for documents that need to be shredded, ink cartridges and even WEEE electrical waste.

 

 

  • Switch to recycled products wherever possible. This could be printer paper, stationery, paper towels or refillable ink cartridges. Speak to your suppliers about the most eco-friendly and cost-effective options and start switching.

 

 

  • Literally turn your office green by filling it with plants. Plants have been proven to reduce stress, increase productivity and even lower sickness rates. It’s also nice to walk into a bright and green office every morning, putting you in a good mood to start the day.

 

 

  • Remove disposable options from the office if there are any, instead ask staff to use mugs and glasses over throwaway cups. Branded or personalised mugs are a great way to encourage everyone to get on board with this idea.

 

 

  • If you’re prone to popping out and buying lunch each day, try switching to homemade lunches. You’ll cut down on packaging with reusable storage and save yourself quite a bit of money. Did you know the average lunch spend of around £5 per day equates to well over £1000 a year? Take it one step further and make the food you eat greener by cutting down on meat and using in-season & local produce.

 

 

  • Use environmentally friendly products to clean your office. There are so many brands offering animal and planet friendly products now that you are spoilt for choice. If you use a cleaning service, discuss with them what options they can offer you.

 

 

 

Now we’ve given you the tools you need to get started we hope you will give green a go. Don’t forget that we can help you dispose of unwanted documents in a safe and secure way. Once your documents are shredded they are recycled and returned as low-grade paper – another great way to keep up the green ethos. Sign up for one of our paper shredding services online today or get in touch to discuss your requirements.

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Keeping Your Business Data Safe This Christmas

It may not seem like something that you should be thinking about during the festive season, but if you get a bit of downtime in your business over Christmas, then it might be the perfect opportunity to consider how you can best approach data security. We know it can be hard to consider the best way to make sure that your business data is safe, so as a Christmas gift to you, we’ve put together some of the best approaches to take and things to think about this year.

 

Take A Look At Your Passwords

Remembering all of your different passwords might be difficult, but remember they are there for a reason. Mainly, They’re there to make sure that your computer-based data is kept safe and secure. Passwords are unique to the user and therefore it should be something that is memorable. That said, it should never be something that could be easy to guess, like your birthday, your pets name or your anniversary. It’s a good idea to not only look at your own passwords, but also to ensure that your staff do too on a regular basis. Changing passwords and ensuring that they are as secure as possible is a good task to set for Christmas time, as it will be easy to remember when you need to revisit them.

 

Keep Physical Data Safe With Shredding

Whilst we are all moving towards a relatively paperless world, chances are that there is still likely to be some physical data and paperwork that we hold as businesses. It is important that this physical data never gets into the wrong hands, which means that you need to do your best to keep it safe. Shredding is hands down the best option for this. Not only does it destroy the data, but it also disposes of it in a fashion that ensures that it could never be put back together. And it’s a perfect festive task – just whack on some Christmas music and sing along!

 

Educate Yourself On Data

Knowledge is power, and this is definitely true when it comes to data for your business. Take the time to understand not only the data that you need to keep secure for your business – but why it’s important that this data is kept secure too. Not only this, but if you employ staff in your business, then perhaps you should encourage them to learn more about data too. After all, the biggest security weakness in any business is it’s people, and educating your team about data security will help them be on board with any new rules or policies that you are planning on putting in place.

 

Consider the Cloud

In this modern world, the way that we store things is really starting to change. The cloud is just one example of this. Storage for data has become remote, and with this there is the added safety and security that can come with cloud-based storage. Of course, there are some concerns when it comes to how things are stored on the Cloud, and many business owners are still concerned about sending their data somewhere off-site (even though for disaster recovery purposes this is a good thing). But if you choose a reputable storage provider, then everything should be fine, and all your questions will be answered.

 

At Hungry Shredder, we spend most of our time shredding sensitive documentation for businesses who don’t have the time or resource to do it in-house, but know it is an important part of their data security plans. Out outsourced document shredding service is the perfect way to ensure you keep your business data safe, without having to lose too much of your valuable time on it. If you would like to know more about our festive shredding offers, just get in touch with us today.

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What Christmas Packaging Is Recyclable

The holiday season is upon us once again, and that can mean only one thing: mountains of presents wrapped in a variety of packaging. Family households are known for shoving all of this into a black bag or into the recycling bin and hoping for the best, but with everything from cardboard to dyed wrapping paper helping us hide our special gifts, there are a few things that you should know.

 

Wrapping Paper

Some local authorities will accept wrapping paper in home recycling collections, but not all. This is because some recycled paper mills do not take wrapping paper. The materials that go into making some kinds of wrapping paper result in a paper that can’t be recycled. This is because this wrapping paper contains non-paper additives such as glitter, which can’t be recycled with the paper.

 

Before you try and recycle wrapping paper that can definitely be recycled (wrapping paper that is plain and/or non-laminated, if it’s coloured) ensure that you remove any sticky tape, ribbons, and bows. These store-bought decorations often cannot be recycled. A good way to know whether or not you can recycle your wrapping paper is this: if you can scrunch it up, it can be recycled.

 

Christmas Decorations

Tinsel, and glass or plastic baubles should be carefully disposed of in your general waste, but lights and wreaths can be recycled. If your wreath is made of natural materials, it can be recycled as green or garden waste once the glitter, ribbons, and bows have been removed from it.

 

Fairy lights are becoming increasingly popular at Christmas time and are even used to light up and showcase some gifts. These can be recycled at household waste recycling centres, though some local authorities may be happy to collect small electricals as a part of their recycling collections – you could also check the large recycling bins at supermarkets to see if they can be put there. However, any item that is classed as a piece of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment should be disposed of at a designated area, typically a household waste recycling centre, rather than put into general waste. Any item that has a plug or uses batteries (such as the LED lights that are used to decorate gift boxes etc.) is classed as electrical waste.

 

Labels and Envelopes

Labels and envelopes are everywhere during Christmas time. You may not think about it, but some of these contain sensitive personal information and you should endeavour to keep them in your pile of “things that need to be shredded”.

 

If a label or envelope has your name and address on it, it could be classed as a sensitive document, because it reveals your personal information. Try to keep these paper items away from the rest of your recyclables until you have found the time to shred them.

 

Afterwards, put all of your shredded paper into your paper and cardboard recycling box. Remember, if you get a gift in the mail, pull off its name and address label to be shredded. If you have a full bin already (and at Christmas that wouldn’t surprise us!) then you might want to hire in a shredding company to help. At Hungry Shredder, we run an on and off-site shredding service guaranteed to help you through the festive season, and increase your recycling too! For more information, get in touch with us today.

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Famous Hollywood Shredding Scenes, And Why Shredding Is So Important

Paperwork is piling up on your desk and in your draws; it’s old and unneeded but you haven’t gotten around to throwing it out yet. The recycling bin is overflowing with complete pages containing information – sensitive and otherwise. But no one seems to be shredding anything, at all. And from your desk, you realise that you don’t think you’ve ever seen a shredder.

 

So why is shredding your documents so important?

 

Picture The Wolf of Wall Street. Jordan, wearing a wire, talks to Donnie while they share a meal together. Jordan slips Donnie a note that says: “Don’t incriminate yourself, I’m wearing a wire.” Donnie falters but manages to not say anything that would cause an issue later on or get him arrested. But what happens to the note?

 

Well, if you’ve seen the film, you’ll know that Jordan is addressed the next morning, and the agents that pick him up have the note in-hand. Obviously, this implies that Donnie threw Jordan under the bus and snitched. This situation could have been avoided if Jordan had remembered to take the note away from Donnie and shred or burn it.

 

1997, The Devil’s Advocate. “You got a problem with documents? Put together one of your late-night shredding sessions.” We see a lot of Hollywood films and popular, modern TV shows that take place in the business industry – many of the more dramatic ones include scenes where someone is shredding something late at night. They do it quickly and quietly but are almost always caught.

 

If we move away from Hollywood movies for a moment and look at a couple of TV series that include shredding scenes, the first that may come to mind is Better Call Saul, which included a shredding scene in the second teaser trailer of a few fake licenses and a Police Report being shredded. Suits is another great example of why shredding your documents is important – given that there are entire episodes dedicated to why having a paper trail can be bad for business.

 

Of course, this is a little dramatized, because otherwise it wouldn’t make good TV! But on the other side of the TV screen, real businesses have paper trails. They have documents for their employees, invoices for clients, personal information tucked into draws, and company records stored on-site. When an employee can’t find a particular file, do they not panic when they realise it’s gone missing? Some documents can be replaced, but the ones that go missing are concerning, to say the least.

 

No matter the type of document, one thing is clear: Shred it. Not shredding your documents can lead to the downfall of you and/or your business. Documents always contain sensitive information; everything from photocopies of licenses to signed contracts. If one is lost or thrown away without being properly disposed of, it can lead to a lot of issues. The best thing to do is shred every document that you or your company are finished with. Keep a record of what is shredded, and how it is disposed of afterwards.

 

At Hungry Shredder, we work with business owners just like yours, helping them avoid these shredding scandals and possible problems. Businesses big and small have been caught out by forgetting to shred sensitive information – some have lost their customer’s data and had to close, and others have revealed criminal activity. Whatever your reasons, the message is clear – shred it, don’t store it. For more information, just get in touch with us today.

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A Beginners Guide To Preventing Fraud In Your Business

As a business owner, your main aim is to protect and grow your business. And yet, every year 1 in 4 small and medium-sized businesses are affected by fraud. Fraud attempts can affect any business of any size, and can cost upwards of £18.9 billion in losses. Much as you might not like to think about it, fraud is a very real risk to your business, and something you should ensure you have protections in place for. But the problem is, a lot of small business owners aren’t really sure what fraud looks like and what the risks are, let along how to protect themselves against it. So today, we have a few pointers for you.

Identify Risk Points

The first step in protecting your business from fraud is to identify where your risk points are. These can vary from business to business, but typically fall into 4 categories:

 

  • Risks From Customers – from counterfeit money to stolen payment details or fake orders

 

  • Risks From Employees – No one likes to think that their employees would defraud them, but sadly, it can and does happen. Whether they are disgruntled ex-employees or just bad people, they have access to information that could ruin your business.

  • Risks From Suppliers And Service Providers – Other businesses you deal with can also defraud you if you’re not careful, often by overcharging, or not delivering goods or services that have been paid for,

  • Risks To Business Assets – What assets does your business have that could prove a valuable target for fraudsters? This could include buildings, equipment and cash, as well as customer data, brand identity and even future product ideas.

 

 

Different Types Of Fraud

 

  • Business Identity Theft – Business identity theft is a lot like personal identity theft. It happens when a thief or fraudster impersonates your business to access information, make orders or steal money or alter key information for the business. Fraudsters will often misuse genuine credentials for the business, stolen through hacking or physical theft.

 

  • Intellectual Property Theft – Intellectual property theft involved copying your company’s creative property, and then using it for personal or business gain. This kind of theft can be perpetrated by individuals and businesses alike, and is most commonly found in corporate espionage. Intellectual property is a form of intangible asset, and covers anything from products and inventions to designs, the contents of a book and your company branding.

  • Company Data Hacking – This is one of the more well-known forms of fraud, since it’s often talked about in the news. This is when a criminal or disgruntled employee will unlawfully access your company data and steal it. They could then sell it on the black market, use it for identity theft or even for extortion, which is what makes company data so valuable, and dangerous if it gets into the wrong hands.

 

 

Document Security

So how do businesses protect themselves against fraud? By protecting the security of their documentation. Fraud often occurs because thieves gain access to bank account information, passwords or other information that has been written down and then discarded. These documents can be picked up by anyone, from desks and bins to the big recycle bins, and even at recycling plants. That’s why having a shredding solution in place is essential to protect your business from fraud. Ensuring you collect sensitive information and store it securely when it is no longer needed is the first step of the process. Next, you will need a secure, accredited shredding partner to dispose of the documents for you safely, and provide you with a certificate of destruction afterwards to prove it.

 

At Hungry Shredder, we help businesses protect themselves against fraud, corporate espionage and theft by providing a secure document shredding service. Our experts can provide you with a selection of secure sacks for you to store your documents in, as well as both on and off-site shredding solutions, so that your business can rest easy knowing that your business data is safe. For more information, please get in touch with us today.

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8 Ways DIY Shredding Is More Expensive Than Outsourcing

Here’s a sad fact. We know that there are a lot of companies out there who don’t shred their documents (well, it’s sad to us). True, there are less now that GDPR has basically made it a requirement, but there are still some rebels who don’t follow the rules. But what we find sadder than that is the sheer number of businesses who still do their shredding in-house. For 99% of businesses, this is a hugely inefficient process (unless you happen to be a shredding company), wastes a lot of time and isn’t that secure. But those businesses persevere, because they believe it’s saving them money. After all, they’re not paying a company to do it, so it’s not costing them anything, right? We’re here today to tell you just how wrong they are.

 

 

Data Security

 

You might think that because the paper never leaves your office, it’s a more secure way of disposing of confidential information. But really, it’s anything but. This is mainly because in order to be deemed ‘secure’ by laws like GDPR, shredding needs to have a set of stringent controls and processes to ensure no confidential information is leaked, lost or stolen during the process. And unless you happen to be a shredding company yourself, it’s unlikely your business has those controls in place – and it would be a waste of financial resources to try and put them in place, not to mention put a significant dent in your bank balance.

 

 

Reassembly Risk

 

Despite the widespread message that strip cut shredders are bad, they still make up the majority of office or home shredders – usually because they’re less cumbersome and cheaper to buy. But the main reason strip cut shredders are bad is because they are a massive security risk. The strips of paper can be easily reassembled by anyone with enough time and dedication to the task, giving any criminal willing to go through your recycle bin all of the information they could ever want on you, your business and your customers.

 

 

Proof of Destruction

 

Under the Data Protection Act, and now the GDPR that has replaced it, businesses are required to provide a full audit trail on every piece of data you hold on an individual. They are also required, if asked, to destroy that information securely, and provide proof of destruction for it. For that job, nothing is better than a shredder. But how can your business provide proof that it was destroyed? Short of filming it being shredded, your options are limited. But with a service like ours, you will be provided with a fully compliant certificate of destruction, confirming that you’ve met your legal obligations with a single piece of paper.

 

 

Efficiency

 

Most office shredders can handle a few pieces of paper at a time, and they’re fine with that. But when you start adding things like staples, binding or paperclips into the mix, they start to struggle. That means you’ve either got to pay someone to spend their time painstakingly removing all of these things before feeding paper to the shredder 5 pieces at a time, or you risk some pretty hefty repair cost for your shredder. Or, you could just put all of it in a bag and let the industrial shredders take care of it.

 

 

Wages

 

This one is really simple – DIY shredding requires someone to physically do the shredding. And employees who spend time shredding have less time for the tasks they were hired to do. So in one way or another, you are still paying for the shredding to be done – and often the wages are much higher than the fees of an outsourced shredding company.

 

 

Maintenance

 

Shredders, while fairly low key little things, do require maintenance, particularly if they’re used a lot. Ongoing repairs, servicing and attention are all needed to make sure they run properly and are actually destroying data, not just mangling it up a bit. If a paperclip gets lodged in the teeth, it could cost you a pretty penny to get repaired, or replaced. But with an outsourced shredding service, you don’t need to worry about that.

 

 

Volume

 

As we mentioned earlier, typical office shredders can usually only cope with 5 pieces of paper at a time. Which is fine if that’s all you’re doing. Not so fine if you’re a solicitors office with 1000+ page documents you need to destroy. All you end up with them are a lot of frustrating hours spent in front of a shredder and wondering why you’re bothering, when an outsourced service could do it all for you in a fraction of the time.

 

 

Employee Error

 

Finally – people make mistakes. Without policies, processes or training, mistakes are inevitable. Whether that’s missing a paperclip and causing damage to the machine, shredding the wrong thing or not shredding something, errors do occur. Over 874 security incidents every year are caused by employee error or negligence with data. Don’t let yours be next – hire an expert instead.

 

 

So what are you waiting for? Stop trying to cut costs (and actually increase them with the effort) and start protecting your business. Outsourced shredding with an expert like us is a simple, painless and cheaper alternative to taking on all that risk and work yourself, plus it’s better for the environment too! For more information on outsourcing your shredding needs, just get in touch with the Hungry Shredder team today.

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On-Site vs Warehouse Based Shredding – The Security Difference

When it comes to shredding, there are a lot of different options out there for you. Sometimes that can seem a bit confusing, and it can be difficult to work out what is best for your business. So today we’re here to help. There are essentially 2 different options available to you – on-site shredding, and warehouse or ‘plant’ based shredding, and choosing the right one is important for the security of your confidential data. But what are the differences, and what does your choice mean for your business?

 

What Is On-Site Shredding?

The important thing to remember here is that on-site shredding is not the same as in-house shredding. With in-house shredding, you are handling the job alone, probably with nothing more than a shop bought cross-cut shredder and employees who are not trained in how to handle confidential information properly. By contrast, on-site shredding is provided by an external professional data destruction service, on your premises. So even though the documents don’t leave your business location, it’s not your employees who are handling the process. Rather, the professionals are handling all of the shredding related tasks to ensure that the procedures utilised are proven to be completely secure. All materials designated to be shredded will be destroyed before the shredding company’s lorry leaves your location, providing you with peace of mind and ultimate security.

 

How Does It Work?

Your business prepares for on-site shredding by separating out all of the paperwork you are looking to shred. This is usually done using a secure shredding sack or unit, like this one. From there, there are two types of on-site shredding – one off and an ongoing service. The first is what you would expect – the shredding company comes once and shreds all of your designated material. With ongoing shredding, the company will come to your premises on a regular basis to shred any confidential material you’ve built up during that time. This is particularly popular for solicitors and other businesses that deal in high volumes of confidential paperwork. The load is then fed into the shredding company’s mobile shredding lorry, and you are provided with a certificate of destruction, which you can use to prove that you have met your obligations.

  

Pro’s And Con’s

 

Pros: 

  • Documents don’t leave your premises, ensuring complete security.
  • Significantly reduces employee time spent on shredding.
  • An ongoing service means that confidential data won’t build up
  • It’s a quick process

Cons:  

  • It can be more expensive than warehouse based shredding.

 

What About Warehouse Shredding?

 

Warehouse or ‘off-site’ shredding is another form of outsourced shredding solution, but the shredding is taken to a warehouse, instead of the warehouse coming to the office. Instead, a designated employee will bring the shredding sacks to the shredding company’s warehouse, where they will be processed. Swing-shift employees at the facility typically sort the material to be shredded on conveyor belts and then the material is shredded by a plant-based shredder.  The shred size generated by plant-based shredders is typically similar to what is generated by on-site shredding.

 

How Does It Work?

 

This option is even simpler than on-site shredding in some ways. Your business will store any documents that require secure destruction into a secure unit or sack until it is full. At that point, someone from the business will bring those documents to the shredding centre, or a courier will be arranged to collect them. The documents are then shredded using warehouse based shredding machines, and a certificate of destruction sent back to the business as confirmation that the service has been completed.

 

Pro’s And Con’s

Pros:

  • It doesn’t pull your employees away from their duties for very long.
  • You will not have to find a lot of storage space for obsolete material.
  • It can be less expensive than on-site shredding.

 

Cons: 

  • Your documents travel away from your business location, increasing the risk of loss or theft.
  • Your documents could sit for hours or even days in a warehouse before the job is completed.
  • Documents will pass through several hands before being shredded, increasing risk.

 

At Hungry Shredder, we specialise in making paperwork destruction as painless as possible for your business. Our secure shredding service mean that collecting data (and keeping it safe during the process) has never been simpler and will be easy to adopt throughout the company. We operate on both an on-site and a warehouse model, so you can chose the right shredding solution for your and your business. For more information, just get in touch with us today.

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Why You Need To Shred Paper To Be GDPR Compliant

With less than a month to go, GDPR is causing a huge wave of activity from business owners across the UK, and probably across the whole of Europe too. But while a lot of businesses are focussing their efforts of digital security, they are missing one very important component of the regulation – their paper-based data. Just because the world is moving into digital processing, doesn’t mean that paper-based risk has gone away completely, and it would be a costly mistake to make.

 

In fact, research from the ICO during 2016 revealed that 40% of UK data security incidents were attributed to paper. These included:

 

  • 19% – data being posted or faxed to the wrong recipient

 

 

  • 14% – paper being lost or stolen

 

 

  • 4% – data left in an insecure location

 

 

  • 3% – insecure disposal of paperwork

 

 

Since that study was done, a 20% increase in loss or theft of paperwork has been observed. So you see, when paperwork presents nearly 50% of the risk, why is it not receiving 50% of the attention? And how do you protect your business?

 

Why Do I Need To Shred? 

 

Simply put, shredding your paperwork is the single most secure way to dispose of it. Not only that, but it helps your business meet its GDPR requirements for data security by providing an effective and secure way of disposing of data, preventing access by third parties. After all, GDPR is concerned with how personal data is handled by businesses in both electronic and paper format. If you don’t have processes in place to protect the data you hold in hard copy, you are leaving yourself open to serious security risk, and potential fines from the EU regulator. This is because, under GDPR, you are liable if a data breach leads to an individual’s personal information being stolen.

 

One of the key components of data security is proper disposal of data – in any format. Unshredded documents can be read by anyone, so simply putting them in a bin or recycling bin isn’t going to cut it (see what we did there?). By shredding your documents once they have fulfilled their purpose, you are effectively destroying the information and preventing it from being read by third parties – fulfilling your obligations in one, simple action.

 

What If I’m Already Shredding?

 

If you’re thinking ‘well, I feed all my documents to the office shredder, so I’m, fine’ – you might want to check yourself first. You might still be at risk if your shredding practices aren’t at a high enough level to secure data completely. This is mainly because most office shredders are ‘strip cut’, which still poses a risk of breach through reconstruction (see our blog here for more info on that). Luckily, there are 3 main options business owners can use to ensure they are 100% compliant:

 

  • Cross-Cut Shredders – cross cut shredders significantly increase the security of your destruction simply by adding in another blade. This leaves documents in tiny shreds that are almost impossible to reconstruct – which is what you need for GDPR level security. Find out more about cross cut shredders in our article here.

 

 

 

  • Auto-feed Shredders – Because shredding is a time consuming and frankly, dull, task, one of the other big non-compliance issues is it simply not getting done. Auto-feed shredders remove the time-consuming element from the equation, since you just have to plonk a stack of documents on it and the machine will pull them through to shred. However, these machines are incredibly expensive and large, making them, a less than ideal solution.

 

 

 

  • Secure Paper Destruction Services – And then there’s secret option number 3 – get someone else to do it for you. If you’re struggling to find the time to get your shredding done, or you need large volumes dealt with regularly, then outsourced shredding is the solution for you. Simply have a secure console (like a tall, enclosed bin) installed in your office and drop papers in as you’re done with them – your shredding partner takes care of the rest.

 

 

 

At Hungry Shredder, we specialise in making paperwork destruction as painless as possible for your business. Our secure shredding service mean that collecting data (and keeping it safe during the process) has never been simpler and will be easy to adopt throughout the company. When your paperwork is collected, it’s shredded in one of our mobile shredding units, and you are provided with a data destruction certificate then and there – as proof that you’ve met your obligations under GDPR. For more information, just get in touch with us today.

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GDPR Myths (And What You Really Need To Focus On)

It’s close to crunch time, which means that GDPR has got everyone a bit hot under the collar. Even more so now that we’re down to a double digit countdown to implementation day. But there are so many articles and papers flying around that there has started to be some conflicting information out there, to the point that we now have ‘GDPR myths’, despite the regulation not even being in force yet. So today, we wanted to clear a few things up – looking at 4 GDPR myths and the truths behind them.

 

Breach Reporting

Under the Data Protection Regulation, businesses are required to disclose data breaches to anyone who’s data may have been compromised, In that sense, not a lot will change with GDPR. The new regulation still makes it mandatory to report a personal data breach if it’s likely to risk people’s rights and freedoms. To clear that up, the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) provided a paper that identified high risk ramifications to data breach, including discrimination, damage to reputation, financial loss and other significant economic issues. Mandatory reporting helps catch these things early, and put measures in place to prevent the damage.

 

Reporting Deadlines

Following on from mandatory reporting of data breaches., GDPR also sets out a timeline for when that reporting needs to happen. In order to be compliant, businesses need to notify the ICO that a personal data breach has taken place within 72 hours of discovering it. This does not mean within 72 hours of the data breach happening – but rather 72 hours from the moment of discovery. So if a day breach happened 3 months ago, but you only just discovered it at this moment, you would have 72 hours from now to report it. The ICO doesn’t expect all of the exact details right away either – they understand that you might not have all of the information in place, but they want to know the scope of the breach, the cause, and your mitigation plan.

 

Fines

GDPR also instigates a new type of fine for breach of its regulation – and its pretty heavy. Under GDPR, the ICO will have the power to issue fines for breaches, including failing to notify, and failing to notify on time. These fines can vary in scale, but climb as high as 4% of the company’s global annual revenue, or 20 million Euros – whichever is higher. But the regulation isn’t just about issuing huge fines. In fact, fines can be avoided if businesses take a transparent approach and comply with regulations.

 

Information Destruction

One of the bigger elements to GDPR is the ‘right to be forgotten’. With this in mind, businesses should no longer be keeping personal information any longer than necessary – and must delete or remove the data at the owners request. This means that businesses need to have an information destruction process in place and know how to follow it. The best procedures are ones that are simple to follow – which means you need an easy way to dispose of both digital and physical data. If you’re not sure how to do that – just ask your local shredding consultant.

 

There’s no doubt about it – even if you’ve never thought about it before, now is the time to take action. Every business handling EU data needs to be looking at its own processes, and taking steps to protect their business from the inside out. To learn more about how Hungry Shredder can protect your documents and hard drives, even under the watchful eye of GDPR, just get in touch with us today for your free consultation and quote.