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Stericycle Inc.

08/19/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 08/19/2021 10:32

People Are Stealing Information Out of Trash Cans

Many companies are planning to move their offices to smaller spaces. The guess is that they don't intend to bring all their old filing cabinets with them.

There has to be certain care taken in moving offices. A move is often the perfect time to schedule a purge day, or a purge week, where employees clean out their desks and file cabinets with the goal of only keeping what they need. To do that, the legal or human resources departments often draft a record retention schedule that typically specifies how long certain documents must be kept. These could be financial records, permits, human resources files or manifests or whatever. Management may elect to keep some documents, like expired sales contracts with key clients, past their throw-away date just so they can have a historical record that might come in handy someday.

If you're a company of any size, a $200 shredder from an office supply store should not be trusted to destroy sensitive documents. To reduce waste in a secure manner, paper documents should be shipped off and shredded in bulk, with an outside service firm certifying that the job has been completed.

Throwing away documents is one thing. But many of these documents can be scanned and converted to digital formats, right?

If you want to copy a few hundred sheets of paper into a computer, you can probably knock that off yourself. But if the goal is to copy thousands of sheets of paper, you probably need to engage a service to do the job, meaning that they will be likely to employ large-volume scanners off site. The company should ensure that physical transport of their documents is secure.

Companies worry about how much space their employees take up in an office. But if they really want to save money, it pays to look beyond just the bodies, right?

Yes, rent is assessed on a per-square-foot basis. If you have lots of paper, that takes up space. It may be advisable for many companies that must preserve physical documents to store them off site in cheaper warehouse-like places, while continuing to ensure their security.

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