Nothing is worse than having your personal information stolen or having someone gain access to it without your permission. The only way to keep your sensitive documents secure is to shred the contents of the paper. However, not everyone knows exactly what items you can put in a paper shredder. You can actually shred a variety of things without any issues, so long as those items aren’t larger than the machine or too thick for the blades. Here are six things to put in your shredding machine to protect your privacy and security while keeping you and your office safe.
Bank statements & confidential documents
This is a no-brainer. Paper shredding machines are designed to protect your privacy by destroying any sensitive information contained within a paper, including names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses. Bank and credit card statements are a good example of the type of document that can be shredded to ensure your private information remains secure.
The size of financial documents and papers can sometimes prevent them from fitting into most paper shredders, causing jams or other problems if you force feed too many at once or too quickly. If you are shredding financial information with a small paper shredder, you should cut the documents to size before feeding them into the machine. It is also a good idea to separate financial papers and records that you want to keep from those that you want to shred.
If you have old receipts lying around in every corner of your home, it’s a good idea to shred them to prevent wasting valuable space and create a clutter-free desk or drawer. They can also be difficult to sort through, making them an unattractive option for tracking your finances.
Almost all paper shredders are fine with shredding old receipts, store receipts, and other small pieces of paper that don’t include sensitive information. This is even more crucial if your old receipts contain sensitive information such as credit card numbers, which could be used for identity theft. Getting rid of old receipts is a smart choice for safety, convenience, and efficiency.
Credit & bank cards
Shredding credit cards is a great way to protect yourself from identity theft while securely destroying all the sensitive information stored on the card. However, credit cards are often one of the trickiest items to put in a paper shredder, as not all shredding machines can destroy them. Only plastic credit cards can be shredded, not metal ones. In addition, some shredders have a slot specifically designed for credit cards that is used to shred these kinds of paper materials because the metal chip on the card may become stuck between the shredder’s teeth and cause jamming.
Photos can contain a lot of sensitive information, and shredding them is the best way to protect yourself from identity theft and unauthorised use. A shredding machine is an effective and safe way to destroy photos that you no longer need. It ensures that no one can access the information contained within them, such as addresses, phone numbers, or other personal information.
Some shredders may have a photo setting that will shred photos smaller than the rest of your documents. This ensures that all traces of the photos’ contents are securely destroyed and cannot be pieced back together. Besides, shredding also helps to reduce paper waste at home, as photos cannot be recycled and are usually disposed of with other non-recyclable waste.
Identity cards & badges
Identity cards and badges can also be safely shredded with any other paper. This is typically the case for most paper shredders, although smaller machines may struggle with securely disposing of them.
Shredding identity cards and badges is often the most secure and effective way to dispose of them because all sensitive information, such as your name, address, and phone number, is destroyed and there is no chance of them being recovered. Shredding also helps protect the environment because the shredded materials can be recycled rather than thrown away.
Junk mail & magazines
Chances are that you have a lot of junk mail and magazines lying around your house. In many cases, shredding them can be a more practical and effective way to get rid of them than manually tearing them up or throwing them in the bin. Additionally, it also helps to reduce paper waste because most shredded paper can be used as bedding for small pets, packing material, or compost in gardens.
Also, have a look at this paper shredder buying guide, if you’re still unsure of the kinds of documents you should shred.
Inspect the shredder for any issues.
Paper shredders are powerful machines. But if you put too much paper in at once or too quickly, you could jam it or even break the cutting mechanism on the machine. It can also be easy to overlook the smaller pieces of paper that might get caught between the blades and cause jamming issues or ineffective shredding. Hence, it’s always a good idea to take a few minutes to run through your paper shredder and make sure that everything is running smoothly before you start shredding any paper materials.