Shredders, the perfect machine for destroying secret or private documents, but picking the right shredder isn’t quite as straightforward as you may have once thought.
For example if you run a business and are dealing with any sensitive personal information, there is a minimum shred size you have to abide by…. pretty strict right?
The range of shredders than can be used to obliterate your documents is pretty wide and depending on your circumstances, different shredders can be far more useful than others. Your identity is a valuable commodity and should be protected like you would any other treasured item.
Research shows that nearly a quarter a UK citizens have been a victim of identity fraud- the highest figure in Europe. A further 75% of people have been exposed to scams used by identity fraudsters. Stopping identity theft is about monitoring what information you choose to allow out into the open.
One simple step to cut down you vulnerability is investing in a shredder. Bank statements, bills, receipts, credit card slips, and wage packets contain all the information needed for a fraudster to build a profile of you.
A study from ID Fraud campaign website stop-idfraud.co.uk shows 87% of people keep copies of personal information and 83% store at least some of these items in paper form.
52% of all fraud in the UK can now be accounted to fake identity details, or the impersonation of an innocent victim (Identity Fraud).
With a shredder you can safety destroy sensitive material that otherwise could be used by criminals to piece together a picture of you and impersonate an element of your life.
It’s not just in personal surroundings identity fraud hits. Consumer trust in business security is at an all-time low. “Just 5% of British people are 100% confident that the organisations they deal with treat their personal information in such a way that it will not accidentally fall into identity fraudsters’ hands” –stop-idfraud.co.uk
So what type of shredder is most suitable for you?
Naturally you want to keep your files as secure as possible and depending on your environment, different shredders offer various options to aid destroying sensitive information. As the chart above shows there are three major types of shredder.
Strip cut– The standard line cut know as P1 Grade. These shredders are the most basic form of security, stripping paper into about 33 sheets of lines. They are ideal for destroying non sensitive data.
You can also get P2 Grade which is basically a thinner strip cut, usually about 4mm wide and cut into 55 pieces.
Although strip cut will destroy the paper, these pieces can be easily pieced back together by criminals using computer software. These shredders are not recommended for information deemed sensitive. It’s advisable to only use strip cut shredders for destroying unusable paper.
Cross Cut – Cross cut shredders, P3 Grade, are a level above strip cut shredders as they will cut the paper both horizontally and vertically- Hence cross cut.
Depending on what security level you purchase, cross cut shredders will cut paper to around 300 pieces, that’s 10 times more than a strip shredder.
Cross Cut shredders are suitable for sensitive business material and home office use, they are the minimum legal grade for destroying sensitive material in a business.
Micro Cut– Micro cut, P4 Grades are one of the finest cuts you can find for commercialised shredders. The Micro cut works like a cross cut shredder but with far finer shreds.
A4 paper is obliterated into anywhere between 2,000 and 6,000 pieces of confetti and is virtually impossible to piece back together. On many machines individual letters cannot be made out after just one cut. Micro cut shredders are perfect for highly confidential documents and commercial use.
Upper level ‘super micro cut’ shredders match the security requirements for government and financial sector use.
Check out some of the options you have when buying a shredder:
This is the UK’s only Micro shredder for under £50! The Texet will take 6 sheets at a time and can shreds each sheet of A4 paper into over 2000 pieces. Its DIN 4 security rated and can hold 80% more paper than an equivalent cross cut shredder.
The Xenta X-p8CD is perfect for home use. This simple cross cut shredder has a large 21L bin and can shred paper into 400 pieces. It has basic jam protection, runs quiet and can shred an A4 sheet of paper in under 6 seconds.
This cross cut shredder from Fellows is 100% jam proof and has safety in mind. The 99CL features SafeSense Technology which immediately stops shredding when hands come into contact with the paper entry, it’s also ultra-quite with SilentShred Technology minimising disruption to shared work spaces. The shredder can cut up to 17 sheets at a time, turning the paper into 3cm2 confetti.
The Fellows 425ci is a cross cut shredder designed for larger office use. The Jam Proof shredder can destroy 28-30 sheets at a time, turning A4 paper in 4x30mm cuts with ease. Its continuous duty motor allows full 24 hour shredding meaning ultimate efficiency is possible, no need to slow down in a busy office. The 425ci will also shred CDs/DVDs, Credit Cards, Staples and Paper Clips.
The Rexel shredder is perfect for multi-office use and large scale shredding. This Cross cut shredder can destroy a whopping 500 sheets in one cycle. It can also accept up to 10 sheets per manual shred. It has a dedicated cd/business car shredding port and is self-cleaning. The shredder will helpfully remove paperclips & staples before shredding, so no need to waste time fretting about jamming the blades with bit of metal. With security and safety in mind, the Rexel has the option of pin protected shredding and can automatically detect fingers near the blade.