As industry leaders in secure document management; we are very familiar with the applicable privacy laws that pertain to protecting sensitive matters. In fact, when companies and residents throughout Boston outsource their document shredding needs to our team, they can be rest assured that our processes follow strict guidelines and policies that fulfill these specific laws. What does that mean for you? In short, you can have peace of mind in knowing that our services will help to keep you compliant with state and federal legislation which is extremely important.
If you’re currently shredding old files in-house with an office shredder, is this being monitored properly? Are documents being shred into strips or particles? Are you keeping a record of what has been shred and what hasn’t? There are so many considerations to bear in mind if you perform the shredding itself. The worst part is that while you may think you are doing wonders for the security of your business, you could actually be putting it at risk. How so? For starters, identity thieves can easily put strips of paper back together to recreate a document if the intent is there, but more than that, failing to shred securely and properly could be risky for your reputation.
By law, you are obligated to ensure employees and customers’ personal information is protected from outside exposure; there are specific laws in place as mentioned that indicate the details and responsibilities you have as a business owners. To avoid the risks associated with shredding in house, consider a professional shredding company like A1 DATASHRED to look after your documents. We promise to look after your privacy, through shredding that transforms your documents into minuscule pieces of paper, preventing any chance of reconfiguration.
What are the obligations you must perform to abide these laws? Each pertains to the handling of sensitive information, or properly disposing of sensitive information. In the United States there are different laws that specify rules and regulations that should be met, which of course a trusted shredding company like us can look after.
Here are the key laws you should be fully up to speed on and thoroughly understand:
The Health Insurance Portability and Accounting Act (HIPAA) was implemented in 1996 with the intention of securing confidential patient information, and to maintain and safeguard the privacy of patient medical records. Those in the medical field are subject to the guidelines outlined in HIPAA, and there are penalties outlined for those companies who fail to properly protect specific patient data.
This act applies to all educational agencies and institutions in the United States that receive funding from the Department of Education. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) began in 1974 with the goal of managing the handling and access of educational information to public entities. Such entities could refer to potential employers, foreign governments and publicly funded educational institutions.
Implemented 2005, the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act (FACTA) applies to essentially all business and individuals in the United States that handle or store consumer information. Such information could refer to personal items like credit card numbers, SSN’s, driver’s license or phone numbers and email addresses. The purpose behind FACTA is to protect against and limit incidences of consumer and identity fraud.
How Does Shredding Pertain to this Legislation?
These laws all require secure document shredding to remain compliant; failure to properly dispose of medical records, educational records or any consumer information could lead to hefty penalties and fines for those businesses affected. To fully comply with each of these laws you are required to manage sensitive information properly, ensuring total protection while documents are in your hands and through until they are disposed of.
A1 DATASHRED supplies quality lockable containers that will help your business meet its legal obligations pertaining to secure document shredding. Through our certified professionals and our security containers, we have what you need to keep your operations secure and in full compliance with privacy legislation. Don’t risk a data breach or loss of sensitive information. When in doubt, always shred! Not sure what shredding option is best for you? Choose from on-site or off-site document destruction when you partner with our company. We ensure total security and ensure the shredding process is fast and convenient!
Contact our team for assistance; we’d love to assist your company in your efforts to maintain a secure and organized office.
Paper shredding machines don’t really receive special attention; after all, they aren’t exactly an exciting conversation piece. With that said, you may not be aware of the history of document shredding and the story behind the paper shredding machine. Interestingly enough, there were some pretty significant socio-political events that occurred which all had an influence on the evolution of this handy and important little machine!
The first known patent that was filed for a document shredding device took place in 1909 by Abbot Augustus Low. Even though the patent was filed, the device was never manufactured during Low’s lifetime.
In 1935 the first known paper shredder was designed and made by Adolf Ehinger. Apparently it operated in the same way as a hand-cranked pasta maker, where users would turn a crank while documents were fed through and shred up. Ehinger’s goal behind making the machine was to destroy his anti-Nazi propaganda in an effort to avoid getting questioned by authority figures.
After the Second World War, Ehinger went after governments and financial institutions with the paper shredder and with time replaced the hand crank machine with an electric motor. The events of the Cold War brought document shredders into the spotlight, and with the ongoing threat of espionage present, they suddenly became extremely popular. Government entities especially, primarily used paper shredders until the mid-80’s where other industries saw the value in these as well.
One event that prompted a key change in document shredding was the Iran hostage crisis of 1979. After having used standard cutting paper shredders to shred confidential records, it was learned by Iranian hostages that these strips could be reassembled to obtain the information which was meant to be destroyed. These discoveries of course, lead to the invention of cross-cutting shredders, which are still in use today.
Today, privacy issues brought in by the era of technology have continued the story of the paper shredder. With laws such as FACTA and HIPAA being implemented to fight identity theft, and the FTC suggesting consumers shred financial documents prior to disposal, it is safe to say that document shredders are not likely going anywhere anytime soon.
If you are seeking a qualified and experienced shredding company for your office space, or just shredding services to purge your Boston office, contact the team of experts at A1 DATASHRED. We can put together a plan and service that is in line with your specific budgetary requirements. As a proud AAA NAID Certified member you can be sure that documents are being destroyed in accordance with any relevant laws and required procedures.
Get in touch with our professionals today to arrange a shredding schedule that works for you!