You probably have important documents that contain highly confidential details. You may lock them up somewhere, but this does not really keep them safe. Throwing them in the trash can is not a good option either, because of the potential for identity theft. Shredding is a stress free and convenient way to dispose of such documents and ensure the details cannot be accessed by anybody. Whether the documents contain confidential information about your business or personal details about your customers, you need to take steps to keep this information secure. A shredder enables you to do this by cutting the paper into fine particles and strips. It is highly recommended to shred documents that expose you or your customers to risks such as identity theft or fraud. This includes documents like tax returns, bank account statements and credit card details as well as bills.
So, you are at the point where you know you need a shredder but you do not know which exact shredder you should buy. There are hundreds of different products available on the market, but how will you be able to make an informed choice? The table below is a great way to find the best product for your needs easily.
|AmazonBasics High-Security Micro-Cut Paper, CD, and Credit Card Shredder
|Fellowes 79Ci 100% Jam Proof Heavy Duty Paper and Credit Card Shredder
|Fellowes 60Cs Paper & Credit Card Shredder with Safety Features
|AmazonBasics Cross-Cut Paper, CD, and Credit Card Shredder
|Bonsaii EverShred C149-C Cross-cut Paper/CD/Credit Card Shredder
What Is A Paper Shredder And Why Do You Need One For Your Home Office?
A paper shredder is a mechanical device that is used to dispose of documents in a secure manner. It does this by cutting the paper into small particles or strips.
As a professional handling clients and working from your home office, you will definitely need a paper shredder. If you have documents that have personal details of your customers on them, they need to be securely destroyed. As a business owner, you have a responsibility to handle the company affairs in a confidential manner. Thus, private and confidential related to the company’s accounts or the clients’ personal information should be protected at all times.
By using a paper shredder to destroy documents that you no longer require, it helps to stop them from falling into the wrong hands. This avoids chances of fraud or identity theft occurring. Home office and small business shredders are generally compact and lightweight, which makes them easy to store out of the way when not in use or move them around the office if you have several people working in your small business. Most models on the market today will enable you to shred a large number of papers at the same time, cutting down the time it takes to destroy sensitive documents.
How to Find the Best Paper Shredder for Your Small Business
The following are some of the key points that you should look at and consider when choosing a shredder:
- Shredding type: Depending on the level of security that you would like to maintain as you dispose of the documents, you should take into consideration the shredding type of the machine (micro cut, strip cut or cross cut). The smaller the particles that your shredder produces, the harder it will be to reconstruct these documents.
- Portability: In most small businesses, there aren’t large budgets for office equipment and so sharing resources like printers and other technology is common. Thus, portability of a shredder is one the factors that you need to consider. A shredder that can be moved around easily, ideally on castor wheels, enables it to be moved around the office safely and lowers the chances of accidents.
- Quality or style: Some models have designs that enable you to see the amount of shredded paper that is in the waste bucket.
- Size: If you have limited office space, you may have to look for a compact paper shredder.
- Runtime vs Cool Down Time: All shredder models will have a limited amount of run time before they need to be allowed to cool down. Higher quality models will have increased run times and shorter cool down times, although for most small businesses, you’ll never normally go over the run time in normal usage.
What Makes A Good Paper Shredder for Your Home Office
A good paper shredder is one that enables you to dispose of documents in a convenient and efficient manner. It also ensures that the shredded bits of paper cannot be put back by somebody else, keeping the information secure.
While there are some strip cut paper shredders still on the market, the majority of models now are cross cut or micro cut. The strip cut models that were commonly sold 10-15 years ago are not really suitable for disposing of papers that are sensitive, because it is easy to reassemble the documents.
Cross cut and micro cut shredders do just what their name suggests – they continue to cut the shredded pieces into smaller pieces by cutting across the strips that would normally be the finished output from a strip cut shredder. This makes it a lot more difficult to reassemble the document because instead of being in 32 pieces, it’s now in hundreds or thousands of pieces. Micro cut shredders work the same as a cross cut shredder, but they cut the paper into even finer pieces – approximately 3000 pieces, from a singe page. The smaller the pieces the shredder cuts the document into, the more secure it is.
Advantages Of A Good Paper Shredder
A good paper shredder will save your small business a lot in terms of time and money, especially when you consider the potential damage that can occur when someone gets their hands on confidential information relating to your business or your clients.
The more pages your shredder can destroy at once, the quicker that you or your staff will be able to finish the task of securely destroying your documents. A good quality shredder can take 18 to 24 pages at a time, which is normally all that you will have in one bundle of documents, allowing you or your staff to drop the papers into the shredder and walk off. Shredders with jam protection features also ensure that your paper shredding is done smoothly and without hitches. It’s also important to look at the run time and cooling time requirements – the longer that the machine can run for and the shorter its required cool down period is, the more you’ll be able to get done in a day if you have a big back log of documents to be shredded.
A compact and portable shredder enables you to move the shredder to the room where you would like to shred documents. This is better than having to move about with stacks of highly confidential papers. Some models also feature caster wheels to improve their mobility.
A good shredder enables you to dispose of the sensitive documents in an easy and hassle-free manner. Most models available feature automatically starting and stopping operation – just put your documents into the feeder and it will turn on the shredder and then turn it off when it’s finished shredding. A clear window on the waste bin will enable you to see how full the wastebasket is and whether it needs to be emptied. Some shredder models also allow you to destroy additional items such as credit cards and CDs/DVDs.
The use of a good shredder enables you to ensure that the security of your company and your clients is upheld. By destroying the papers and making the details incomprehensible, the chances of fraud or identity theft occurring is avoided. If your budget can stretch a little bit further, invest in a micro cut shredder. It’ll shred the documents into a lot smaller pieces and this reduces the chances of anyone being able to reassemble the document from the shredded pieces.
Reviews of the Top 5 Models
This shredder functions at a rate of 6 feet per minute and enables you to destroy papers as well as discs and credit cards. The paper intake is oversized and measuring 9.1 inches, perfect for larger than standard letter sized documents. It uses micro-cut shredding, offering you high security for any documents that you destroy. The automatic shut-off provides thermal protection whereas paper jamming is cleared by the automatic start and manual reverse. It is a good for destroying highly sensitive information and very affordable.
This shredder saves you the frustration of having paper jams and enables you to do tough jobs, as it has a jam proof system. The documents are shredded into cross-cut particles. Staples, junk mail, credit cards and discs can also be shredded using this machine. It ensures your personal safety while using it because the shredder is stopped by the SafeSense Technology if a hand touches the paper opening. The SilentShred feature enables you to shred documents quietly without causing disruptive noise to others, which makes this shredder very suitable for use in shared working spaces.
This shredder comes with a security feature, Child and Pet safe Shredder Technology, making it safe to use in your home. This feature makes the shredder stop should a hand come into contact with the paper intake. It has a run time of 6 minutes, after which a cooling time of 20 minutes is needed before using it again. It cuts 10 sheets per pass into cross-cut particle. Staples, credit cards and paper clips can also be shredded using this machine. While it has a shorter runtime than some other models on the market, it is still perfectly suited to your home office needs.
This shredder destroys papers into cross-cut particles. It also shreds CDs and credit cards. However, these should be shredded one at a time. If the door is opened, it shuts off automatically. Paper jams are cleared by the automatic start and manual reverse. This shredder has a 17 sheet capacity, enabling you to shred large numbers of bills, junk mail and other documents very quickly. When you buy this shredder, you get high speed performance and great security at a highly affordable price.
This is a high quality shredder that is suitable for destroying a large number of documents. 18 sheets of paper can be shredded in a single pass. Staples, credit cards and CDs can also be shredded with this unit. It features an extended running time of up to one hour and a wastebasket with a capacity of 6 gallons. Paper jams are avoided by the automatic on and off and reverse function. This unit allows you to shred a large number of documents for a much longer period of time than most competing models and with minimal noise thanks to its quiet motor.