Posts Tagged ‘Identity Theft’

Best Credit Card Shredders (Tips & Advice)

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Credit Card Shredders from ABC OfficeIf you’re in the market for a paper shredder, but would also like to have the ability to shred credit cards, you may be wondering where to start. While many shredders are capable of shredding credit cards, not all have the capability. Shredding credit cards on a non-capable shredder can cause catastrophic jams. Here are a few tips that should get you on the right path.

To begin with, fraud is a continuous battle that we all have to deal with. An improperly discarded credit card can be a one-way ticket to a huge headache. It is recommended to properly dispose of credit cards once they expire or are no longer needed.

While some people simply cut credit cards up with a pair of scissors, this isn’t 100 percent effective, and if done improperly, data can still be read and accessed. It is recommended to shred unneeded credit cards.

Shredders provide an even, uniform and effective way of destroying credit cards. Most modern-day strip cut shredders are capable of shredding credit cards. This because strip cut shredders have fewer moving parts and require less force to shred.

If you are shredding a credit card on a strip cut shredder, feed the card into the shredder at an angle. This will decrease the chance of the credit card numbers making it through unscathed. I personally like to inspect the shredded strips after shredding a credit card to make sure the shredder did the job.

Strip cut shredders are usually fine for shredding credit cards, but if you want to be 100% sure your credit card can’t be read, use a cross cut shredder. Cross cut shredders leave no room for doubt as they effectively shred credit cards in a crisscross pattern.

Not all cross cut shredders can shred credit cards, however, most modern-day office shredders can. Paper shredder product pages should mention that they can shred credit cards. If they don’t mention the ability to shred credit cards, assume they can’t.

Shredding a credit card in an incapable cross cut shredder will more often than not result in a jam. Prying 30 mil plastic strips out of a cross cut shredder is no fun. Worst-case scenario, this can result in gear or motor damage.

You can find our entire selection of both strip cut and cross cut paper shredders here. Remember, our shredders will indicate they can shred credit cards if they are so capable. Feel free to contact one of our paper shredder specialists at 1-800-658-8788 if you need assistance tracking down a credit card shredder.

Paper Shredder Tips & Suggestions – Cut Down On Identity Theft

Thursday, November 12th, 2009

Let’s all be honest, identity theft is a growing problem. Criminals are becoming smarter and craftier at what they do. Chances are pretty good you know someone who has had their identity stolen. There are many aspects to identity theft. As an office equipment business, we focus on the paper end of identity theft. This involves the proper disposal of receipts, bills, bank statements, credit card applications and other paper material that can potentially be used in identity theft.

The best way to cut down on identity theft related to personal information on paper is to use a paper shredder. We recommend that paper shredders be placed in your house wherever you open your mail. This makes it more convenient to shred sensitive information versus throwing it away. Cross-cut shredders do the best job of shredding sensitive information. You can find our huge selection of paper shredders here.

If you own or run a business, there are a few paper shredder related laws that you should be aware of. Two such laws are HIPAA and FACTA. Both of these laws are federally mandated and apply to most businesses. I will go into a little detail on both of theses laws.

The HIPAA Act (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) enforces strict standards that protect patient health information. Part of this law requires that if patient data is no longer required or needed, it must be destroyed rather than thrown away. Paper shredders are probably the most common and convenient way of doing this.

FACTA (Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act) is a law designed to protect customer and employee information while cutting down on identity theft. A part of this law involves properly destroying personal information when it is no longer needed. This means employers cannot throw employee information in the garbage and consider it properly discarded. This new law applies to all employees, even if you have just one. One of the best means of destroying personal information is by using a paper shredder.

Regardless of who you are or what you do, be sure to properly dispose of your personal and sensitive information. If you own or run a business, be sure to take the proper precautions to prevent issues with HIPAA or FACTA. You can learn more by reading our paper shredder guide found here.

ABC Office adds Fellowes paper shredders to their already large line of shredders.

Monday, January 16th, 2006

Fellowes Paper ShredderSince working for ABC Office, I have seen the demand for paper shredders grow significantly over the past several years. To help keep up with demand, we have increased our shredder line by adding the popular Fellowes brand paper shredders to our site. A total of 21 new shredders have been added. While all the shredders can handle paper, many of the new models can shred CDs, DVDs, credit cards and more. Come take a look at our new selection of Fellowes shredders by going here.

FellowesDocument shredding is one of the most important ways you can protect your identity. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) states, “To thwart a thief who may pick through your trash or recycling bins to capture your personal information, tear or shred your charge receipts, copies of credit applications, insurance forms, physician statements, checks and bank statements, expired credit or charge cards that you’re discarding, and credit offers you get in the mail.

Take a look at our useful fraud prevention ideas and paper shredder recommendations by going here:

Shredder Guide

Fraud Prevention Guide

HIPAA

FACTA

For information about a paper shredder that may work for you, call toll-free (1-800-658-8788) Monday through Friday from 7:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. MST. A knowledgeable customer service representative can then assist with answering questions regarding shredders.

Survey Reveals Paper Shredder Trends.

Friday, February 25th, 2005

Paper ShreddersOn February 14th, we sent a paper shredder survey to our customers to inquire about paper shredder use, identity theft and shredder trends. As a result of the survey, we received over 200 responses. The results of the survey are very interesting, showing what people think about identity theft and the importance of paper shredders.

Identity theft is an ever-increasing problem in the United States. The ability to create alternate identities, sign up for credit cards and abuse individuals’ identities is easier than ever for criminals. Receipts, mail and personal information are just some of the methods used to steal one’s identity. Out of 211 respondents,
22 people had been the victim of identity theft. That is over 10 percent of those interviewed.

This coming June, a new law will go into effect that will require anyone who has one or more employees to destroy their personal information. It surprised us to see that only 13 percent of those surveyed were aware of this new regulation.

Not surprising, over 70 percent of those surveyed feel that it is definitely important to destroy personal information. Because dumpster diving is perfectly legal, anything thrown in the garbage is fair game. Seventy-eight percent of those interviewed own a paper shredder. Fifty-one percent say they use their
shredder on a daily basis. Paper shredders help destroy sensitive information. When dumpster diving, criminals tend to go for the easy find. If paper is shredded, the difficulty of putting the pieces back together is enough of a deterrent to make shredding worthwhile.

Strip-cut shredders are still the preferred method of shredding, but cross-cut shredders are quickly growing in popularity. This is due, in part, to the fact that strip-cut shredders have been around longer. Forty-eight percent of those surveyed own a cross cut shredder. Strip cut shredders, especially over-the-can shredders, typically shred paper into ¼-inch strips. These strips, although hard to decipher, can still be reassembled. Cross-cut, or confetti-cut, shredders make it next to impossible to reassemble shredded documents.

The entire ABC Office paper shredder survey can be viewed by going here.

You can learn more about paper shredders, the different types and what they do by reading our paper shredder guide.

Security and Fraud Are Ever-Growing Concerns for Businesses Around the World.

Friday, December 10th, 2004

Paper ShreddersDumpster diving is considered a legal practice and opens the door to identity fraud and corporate espionage. CDs, floppy disks and paper documents are just a few of the items typically found in garbage cans and dumpsters. A thief can take this information and use it for creating fake identities. Businesses have been known to sift through competitors’ garbage for information that will give them a competitive edge. Unfortunately for these victims, proper protection would have been simple and relatively inexpensive.

Paper shredders have been around for a while, yet you would be surprised how many people have yet to purchase one. These devices effectively destroy paper documents. Shredders are also manufactured that will destroy CDs and floppy disks. A CD/floppy disk combination shredder can be purchased for as little as 614 dollars. Inexpensive strip cut shredders do not always do the job. Data cut into one-quarter-inch strips can often still be deciphered and pieced back together. For this reason, cross-cut shredders have become increasingly popular. Documents fed through a cross-cut shredder are unreadable and provide maximum security.

Placing a paper shredder in every department, although ideal, is not always possible. For this reason, secure document containers are available. Secure document containers are a large container, often in the shape of a
shredder, that have a small slit used for depositing paper. Paper fed through the document container opening cannot be retrieved without a key. Once the secure document container is full, an authorized person with a key can empty the container. Discarded paper can then be taken to a centralized shredder for
proper disposal.

Finding a paper shredder is easy. Finding a high-quality shredder that won’t burn out after a few hours of use is sometimes difficult. Purchasing a shredder that can meet your business needs is vital. ABC Office specializes in paper shredder technology, and can help you on your way to finding paper shredder solutions.

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