How to Simplify Your Corporate Information Disposal Processes

A yellow sticky note with the word "simplify" sits on top of a stack of colorful sticky notes on a cork bulletin board.Simplicity is key. When tasks are easily managed, efficiency is optimized. Here are five straightforward suggestions to simplify your corporate information disposal processes:

Establish or Reevaluate Your Information Destruction Policy

Think of this policy as the foundation that supports your building. It supports your processes, safeguarding employee and client personally identifiable information, protecting competitive-sensitive data, ensuring privacy law compliance, offering clear direction to all staff, and facilitating proper recycling.

If you lack an information destruction policy, start by creating one. If you already have a policy in place, take the time to reevaluate and update it to align with your mission and current destruction requirements.

Clarify Retention Periods

Different types of information have distinct lifecycles within your business. Understanding the retention periods of all data that legally requires destruction is crucial. Various laws dictate retention policies, including:

  • The Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) mandates retaining select auditing documents for seven years after the audit’s completion.
  • The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA) regulates how financial service companies protect customer information, stipulating that customer data must be disposed of no later than two years after its last use.
  • The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires employers to retain employee records, including personal information, payroll data, and hours worked, for at least three years.
  • The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requires businesses dealing with electronic health information to follow retention requirements, retaining electronic health records for at least six years.

Implement a “Shred-All” Policy

Eliminate confusion by adopting a shred-all policy. Instead of maintaining a list of papers and documents to shred, ensure that all information is kept within a secure chain of custody until it is destroyed. Avoid using office shredders, as they are not compliant with data privacy laws. Entrust this task to a professional shredding service that will provide you with shredding collection containers and a Certificate of Destruction after every shred project is complete.

Physically Destroy Electronic Storage

Destroying paper documents is only half the battle. Electronic equipment also contains potentially-sensitive information. Ensure that hard drives, computers, laptops, thumb drives, USB drives, and phones are physically shredded when they reach the end of their lifecycle. This ensures that any remaining data cannot be accessed by unauthorized individuals.

Partner with a Local Shredding Company

Leave the destruction of information to the experts. Partner with a local shredding company that specializes in information disposal and is knowledgeable about legal requirements. Look for a company that can shred paper and hard drives and responsibly recycle electronics, all while keeping these materials out of landfills.

ShredLink offers recurring scheduled shredding services for businesses in Southeast Louisiana. Have a small amount of information to shred? Consider our one-time shredding or drop-off shredding options. Simplify your corporate information disposal processes today by calling us at 504-885-0186 or completing the form on this page.

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