In this so-called digital age, a growing number of companies are investing in technology to ensure that valuable data or materials do not fall in the wrong hands. From purchasing printers with excellent security features to hiring experienced network security managers, business owners of today are undeniably taking digital security seriously, and they have reasons to do so.
Unbeknownst to many, data breaches have risen over the years. In the U.S. alone, the number of data breaches in 2016 was 40% more than that of 2015. Meanwhile, other reports state that, as of 2016, the leading cause of data breach is still skimming/hacking/phishing attacks. Additionally, businesses remain to be one of the leading targets of hackers and phishing scams.
Falling victim to a data breach can result in losses amounting to five million euros. On top of the financial repercussions, their reputation gets tarnished and their clients lose confidence in them, too. Moreover, with government implementing new laws on data protection like the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Irish companies that fail to keep sensitive information secure may also face legal sanctions.
Suffice it to say, data leaks have the potential to end a company’s existence. Of course, no business owner wants this to happen; hence, they make digital security their priority. However, while the current effort to secure digital data is commendable, it isn’t enough given that many companies are forgetting about paper-based security.
Why Paper-Based Security Still Matters
With paper digitisation being the buzz phrase in the corporate sphere, the widespread belief is that most companies have gone paperless already. This is not the case, however, with studies showing that 83% of European companies saying abandoning the use of paper is an unrealistic goal. In fact, many businesses still print documents bearing sensitive data like personnel and financial information. While the continued reliance on and use of printed documents is understandable, the lax behaviour towards how these documents are handled is alarming.
Perhaps, with the proliferation of news about systems getting hacked, many company owners have forgotten that paper documents are as vulnerable to security threats as digital documents are. They can be sources of data leaks, too.
For paper documents, one of the common causes of data leaks is the absence of clear-cut rules when it comes to the destruction of these papers. So, if you are still using paper in your company, make sure you have a shredding and document management policy in place. Most importantly, ensure that employees religiously observe the policy. This is the best way to prevent sensitive information on paper documents from ending up in the hands of unscrupulous people.
The Value Of Investing in Modern Shredders
When it comes to shredding company documents, you have two options: enlist the services of a shredding company or do the shredding yourself. If you currently have no tools to accomplish this task, you can choose the former. Meanwhile, if you think paper documents are still going to be used in your business for quite a while, then it’d be wise to invest in a shredder and to do the task yourself. Additionally, by having your own shredding machine, you minimise the risk of data breach by eliminating the chance of outsiders seeing your document.
It is important to note, however, that many employees find shredding documents very time-consuming. This is one of the reasons why many of them aren’t too enthusiastic about this task. There’s truth to this complaint given that traditional shredders are slow and require manual feeding.
The good news is that newer models of shredders are faster and more efficient. In fact, there are shredding machines like the Rexel Auto+ 500M Micro Cut Shredder which have a hands-free, auto-feed feature. These types of shredders are excellent for offices as they lessen shredding time by as much as 98%. This is why they are referred to as productivity-boosting shredders. Moreover, to further ensure document security, these machines shred documents into micro cut pieces and have PIN locking capabilities.
Suffice it to say, for as long as paper documents are integral part of your business, you should give paper-based security as much attention as digital security. If you still have no shredding and document management policy in place, then make one ASAP and start shopping around for an excellent shredder.
For more information about shredders and other products that can help you secure paper documents, call us at 01 460 4444 today!
Image Attribution: Photograph By Papershredder1 (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Image Resource: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File%3APaper_shredder_news.jpg