3 Reasons Why Companies Should Never Throw Private Documents in the Trash

Aug 30, 2022

For most companies, the safety and security of their employee’s valuable information — not to mention their clients’ information — is of the utmost importance. That’s why you should never keep sensitive or personal data longer than is professionally necessary.

Most companies have some kind of data removal policy that determines when and how employee or client data is thrown away to prevent security breaches.

However, did you know that removing personal information in typical ways (i.e., throwing documents in the trash can or recycling bin) could put your sensitive data at risk?

Unless these documents are completely destroyed through a professional shredding process, they could fall into the wrong hands and cause serious issues for your company.

Let’s take a look at three reasons why your business should leave the old ways of data destruction behind and embrace the effectiveness (and increased safety) of shredding.

1. Sensitive Data Could Fall into the Hands of Dumpster Divers

It may be difficult to believe that anyone would actually go through your company’s garbage and end up with sensitive information at their fingertips. However, this happens more than you might think, and many dumpster divers are specifically looking for ways to embroil companies in legal issues as a way to earn some extra money.

Plus, if someone finds a record in your company’s trash bin that they could use to their advantage, they will have come by that information legally, as you threw it away, relinquishing any privacy rights to it. You can prevent this situation from ever happening by simply skipping the trash can and using the shredder instead.

2. Local Laws Allow the Police to Search Garbage

Laws surrounding who can or can’t access items in the garbage are constantly changing, which is why it’s always better to be safe than sorry and shred your sensitive documents instead of throwing them away or recycling them.

For example, a new Iowa law states that members of law enforcement — as well as individuals — are entitled to search the garbage of businesses and have a right to whatever information they find.

You may have nothing to hide from law enforcement, but the principle of this law is that the trash you leave outside your office is no longer yours and legally belongs to anyone. That’s reason enough to maintain your privacy by properly disposing of sensitive information.

3. Insider Fraud Is Easier to Prevent

Insider fraud can occur when a malicious party causes a security breach from inside the company itself. Unfortunately, companies around the country often experience insider fraud at the hands of their own employees or trusted associates.

Placing private documents in the trash or recycling where anyone can access them puts your business at much greater risk of a security breach from someone within your building.

Safe Data Destruction Done Your Way with SEAM

Are you ready to ensure the safe destruction of your company’s sensitive documents? If your business is located in North Dakota or South Dakota, it’s never been easier. Contact us at SEAM today to learn more.

SEAM provides IT recycling and data destruction services including onsite shredding and hard drive wiping to South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, and Nebraska.

Schedule a pickup or contact us for more information.