Why Should My Business Outsource Our Data Destruction?

Data DestructionMost businesses understand the importance of protecting their customers’ information. Depending on the industry, they may have access to social security numbers, financial information, health records and other critical information. Companies take the necessary steps to protect their customers and ensure they are in compliance with federal and state laws. The final step of the process, which includes proper data destruction, is no exception.

Which is why it’s shocking how many times you hear of organizations under fire because someone found binders full of sensitive customer information in a dumpster behind their office. Or data was retrieved from an old computer that they donated or resold, even though they “thought” they had erased it all. Some businesses unknowingly put their customers at risk.

Many workers don’t realize that small office shredders are not only inefficient, but they’re also inadequate for protecting data. In fact, the shredded strips are not particularly difficult to reconstruct, expecially for an experienced financial criminal.

As a small business, you are legally required to protect your customers and comply with relevant security standards including HIPPA (healthcare), FACTA (credit report), and Gramm-Leach-Bliley (financial). Failure to do so can result it stiff penalties, not to mention the negative PR associated data breaches.  Clearly the extra cost of properly destroying customer data is small compared to the possible repercussions of NOT doing it.

Ask any company that has inadvertently compromised their customers’ information and they’ll tell you they wish they had taken the proper steps the first time. Breaking a customer’s trust is the last thing any business wants to do.

Partnering with a professional, reputable data destruction company such as Tristar Document Shredding will give you confidence and peace of mind. You can focus on your customers’ satisfaction and we’ll destroy their sensitive information. Then we can all sleep better at night.

If you are in need of a professional data destruction company give us a call today at 1-888-747-3397 or visit our website to get a free quote.

Hard Drive (Data) Destruction

data destrucionData destruction completely erases data from a computer’s hard drive. This is an important distinction from simply deleting files. Some people mistakenly think that when they delete files and then empty their computer’s recycle bin the data is gone. Not true. Deleting them makes it so the operating system can’t find them, but in fact the data is still there and can be recovered.

Data destruction software, however, really does erase it. It’s important to do this if you need to wipe your hard drive clean before recycling or selling a computer. If, for instance, you get a new computer and want to sell or pass on your old one it’s critical to permanently erase your personal information. You never know where it could end up, and you want to protect yourself from major problems such as identity theft. Take the extra steps to render your data completely unreadable. You don’t want to regret it later.

There are several different options for hard drive destruction. The first is to wipe the drive completely. This destroys your personal information as well as all the drive’s data. Doing this leaves the computer with a completely empty drive. The next owner will have to re-install operating systems and programs.

Another option is to only erase your personal or sensitive files. You can pick which files to delete but the software remains installed. You may choose this option if you plan to keep your computer or pass it on to a friend or relative. It saves them the hassle of re-installing software and programs.

And finally? A third method if you really want to get rid of your hard drive is to physically destroy it. Sounds sort of fun, right? It’s still a good idea to run the data destruction first, just for extra precaution. Then take it out and smash it to bits.

When dealing with sensitive information you want to be sure you have it completely erased. Do your research for which method and programs are best for your needs, and if you need an expert to help you navigate the different options, call us at (936) 788-4733 or get a free quote here.

To Shred or Not to Shred?

Many people affiliate document shredding with businesses, but did you know that you should be shredding your personal mail and documents when you discard them? Personal information such as name, address, phone number, bank account numbers, social security number, etc. can find its way into the wrong hands if not disposed of properly. Hand tearing documents is not effective, because they can easily be pieced back together.

We accumulate so much paperwork it’s hard to decide what we need to hang on to and what we can dispose of. Here’s a list of things you need to keep for a lifetime:

  • Social security cards
  • Birth and death certificates
  • Marriage license
  • Business license
  • Insurance policies
  • House deed
  • Mortgage paperwork
  • Vehicle titles
  • Any loan documents
  • Wills and power of attorneys

Obviously all of these are important documents and they need to be stored in a safe, accessible place so that they can be reached easily when needed. Some of the documents cluttering your home do not need to be kept forever, but how do you know when to throw them away? Here’s a list of things that you only need to hold on to temporarily:

  • Tax records need to be kept for 7 years
  • Home purchase, home sale or home improvement documents need to be kept for 6 years after the sale of your home
  • Medical bills need to be kept at least 1 year after payment
  • Warranty documents and receipts need to be kept for the life of the warrantied item

You also need to keep the most recent version of your annual insurance policy, social security statements, and retirement plan statements. Once you receive current ones in the mail you can discard the old ones.

Everything else you have can be discarded or shredded. Remember, anything with personal information of any kind needs to be shredded, that includes airline tickets, all receipts, all bills, old check books, or any expired ID’s or credit cards.

Tristar Document Shredding provides safe, secure and affordable shredding services to commercial and residential locations. Visit our website here to schedule your free online consultation.

Fight Identity Theft with Document Shredding

identity theft document shreddingA person’s identity is one of the most crucial aspects of security among the working class. This is because it is through identity that one is defined and known by his/her employer. Identity is responsible for many things in one’s life. This is because your identity confirmation is needed almost anywhere you go in order to affirm your presence in a particular place. For this reason, identity crime has been on the rise in recent times because with the introduction of the social media platforms, it has been easy to get the portrait of people since they post their pictures with details in such media as facebook or even twitter. With personal information displayed all over Facebook, one’s identity can easily be assumed by a person with malicious interests to perform ungodly acts and display an innocent person’s identity in the quest for disguising his real identity. Documents are some of the most rampant mode of identity display to malicious people, and it is through some vital documents that information to do with the identity of a person is disclosed to a third party.

 

The only way out of this is to destroy these documents if they are no longer in use by the concerned authorities. This is the only way to safeguard the security of one’s identity from susceptibility of wrong use. There are so many ways through which these documents can be destroyed in a good way in order to protect the identity of the people concerned. One of the best ways of fighting identity theft is document shredding. Tristar Shredding offers document shredding in Houston. The following are some of the most amazing tips to use in order to ensure safety while trying to fight identity theft with document shredding.

Ensure that you hire an approved company to do so

For big institutions which deal with large volumes of documents, it is recommended that they hire a company that deals in handling documents that are no longer needed by the company in question. In order to ensure maximum security, hiring an approved company is the safest thing to do. This is because approved companies are known for their genuine work.

For very sensitive documents, on site shredding is recommended

It is through documents that identity crime starts. Identity is not only physical, it can be in the form of a signature. Thus one can copy a signature and withdraw money from the bank! It is, therefore, very important to always be alert on how to handle such documents that are no longer needed in order to avoid such cases.

Tristar Shredding provides shredding services in Houston and nearby areas. Give us a call today and learn how we can help you with this sensitive situation and give you peace of mind.

Secure Onsite Document Destruction For Your Protection and Your Customers’ Protection

shredding paper

Choosing secure onsite document destruction (for your protection and your customers’ protection) could be one of the best things that you ever do for your business. These services are quick, convenient and will not have any significant impact on your overall productivity. The equipment that Tristar Shredding uses for these efforts is typically capable of shredding thousands of pounds of paper in an hour. Thus, no matter what the magnitude of your document destruction needs may be, you can count on getting swift and seamless results.

Get An Affordable And Reliable Solution To Your Document Destruction Needs

These services are structured for ensuring that all shredded documents are rendered irretrievable. In addition to being shred on site and with you present, these materials are then mixed with other shredded paper. Moreover, all of the resulting waste is wholly recyclable and this means that you can do something good for the environment while protecting your interests and those of your clients.

For some companies, shredding documents that contain the personal and confidential information of customers is essential for remaining in compliance with industry regulations. Having a third-party destroy these documents on your behalf eliminates the need to invest in and maintain costly shredding equipment. Best of all, given that this is all that these companies do, they will give your job their full attention from start to finish. This is not often the case when document shredding is performed in-house and with the use of slower and lower-quality shredding equipment.

How This Process Works

Documents that are tagged for destruction can be secured in locked containers on site for pick-up and processing. Your provider will then arrive with a large truck that is equipped with a heavy-duty document shredder. The locked containers will be moved to the truck and emptied directly into the attached shredding unit so that no parties are ever physically handling these confidential materials. This is the safest and surest way to protect sensitive information at all times.

Opting to perform document destruction in-house and without the use of a trusted service provider like Tristar Shredding can leave ample opportunity for sensitive information to become compromised. In addition to being less secure than using a document destruction service that performs its duties on-site, these efforts will also pull trained talent away from the duties that these individuals were hired to perform in your company. In this way, a trusted document shredding service can significantly improve your productivity and your bottom line by allowing your team to better focus on the needs of your business.

Tristar Shredding provides secure on site document shredding in Houston and nearby areas. Give us a call today to avail yourself of our service to protect your company and your customers.

Data Destruction for Hard Drives and Disks

document-destruction-imageYou may think that simply throwing out old external hard drives, old disks, and old computers is a safe way to get rid of the information that is on these devices. But, you will quickly learn that when these items get into the wrong hands, it can mean the private information you thought was properly destroyed is going to be compromised and may be used against you by the wrong people. There are many people who know how to get information from these old disks and hard drives even though you may think the information is no longer on them. So, rather than simply toss out these old devices, why not properly discard them by utilizing services for data destruction for hard drives and disks. Tristar Shredding in the Houston TX area provides this service.

Hire a professional

You should never simply throw out old hard drives, computers, and disks. And, you do not want to try to destruct the data on these devices on your own either. Rather, you can rely on a professional to do the destruction work for you. In addition to properly disposing of the old disks and hard drives, Tristar Shredding is also going to wipe out all of the information that is on the devices to ensure the wrong people do not get their hands on it. Not only will they wipe the hard drives and disks clean, they can also back up the information if you would like to retain it on another device.

Keep private information safe

Even if you have deleted everything from hard drives and disks prior to discarding these devices, information still remains deeply embedded on them. And, hackers or individuals who are looking to compromise such information can easily do so. What this means is that personal information or information about your clients can be easily compromised. You can keep your information safe when information is properly discarded and destructed by professionals who know what they are doing.

Even if you think you know what you are doing and delete all information, traces of information may still be on old hard drives and disks. For this reason, it is in your best interest to engage the services of Tristar Shredding to perform data destruction for hard drives and disks to ensure all information is truly removed and that these items are properly disposed of. Give us a call today and let us help you dispose of these items!

Don’t Let Your Trash Give Identity Thieves Cash!

tristar-identity-theft1If you’re a company that deals with sensitive client information on a daily basis and disposes of it in a manner that could increase the chances of identity theft, then you’d better change your ways fast since sooner or later you may get sued by one of your clients whose identify got stolen because of you.

 

Most of the time companies are going to use document shredders to ensure that their customers’ private info won’t get into the hands of criminals. This is in fact a very good practice.

At Tristar Shredding we provide commercial, community and residential shredding services. Our mobile shredding unit comes directly to your location allowing you to monitor the shredding process as it happens. There is no need to remove rubber bands, stapes, or binder clips. Our shredders handle it all in one simple operation. Upon completion you will receive a Certificate of Destruction confirming your materials have been destroyed.

While we are primarily an on-site shredding services company, we can also arrange pick up of your documents and transport them to our secure facility for shredding. A Certificate of Destruction is supplied to you immediately upon completion oif the shredding.

We provide regularly scheduled service or one-time service. Our services also include destruction of hard drives, electronic media and other destruction. Physical destruction is the only guaranteed way to permanently destroy your data. Conventional hard drive formatting utilities are not enough. These programs merely delete the directories to your folders and files while the data itself remains intact. Readily available software programs can quickly reconstruct the data, giving others access to your confidential information. Tristar Document Shredding destroys your hard drives and electronic media (CD’s, DVD’s, magnetic tapes, flash drives, etc.) ensuring that no data can be reconstructed or retrieved. Before you recycle, discard, donate or sell that old computer, you must make sure it has no personal or competitive information left on it.

Our services are much more economical for businesses than paying employees to shred documents plus maintaining a shredder. Your employees are free to do other tasks which are more valuable to your company.

Tristar Document Shredding is your choice in Houston for secure, onsite document destruction. Your business generates materials containing sensitive information which could have costly repercussions without proper handling, from theft and misuse to legal fines. It is necessary to have a legally compliant, cost-effective means of destroying this information. Not only is using Tristar Document Shredding the most convenient and economical shredding solution, it is the best way to protect your company in the face of new information protection regulations.

Give us a call today at Tristar Shredding and find out how we can solve this situation for your company.

Data Retention vs. Data Destruction

tristar-sensitive-informationCompanies and individuals today are faced with a challenging decision of choosing between data retention and data destruction. With a constant compiling of information and data taking place, individuals and businesses are left to solve the problem of constant information accumulation. Without a strategic plan for handling their data, businesses and individuals can quickly become overwhelmed by the massive amount of information that can collect. For this reason, it is critically important that a data retention and/or data destruction plan is developed and applied on a daily basis. Through creating a clear and concise plan, individuals and businesses can stay on top of their information and can ensure that they do not become overwhelmed by unmanageable loads of information. Tristar Shredding has a solution to this problem that is right for you!

 

Data retention provides a level of insurance for information that individuals and businesses want to keep records of for an extended period of time. In previous years and decades, data retention was a somewhat common practice due to the more manageable levels of information that were being collected and saved. Previously it was viewed that the safest way to keep information was through storing it and locking it away so that it is was available to be accessed at a later date. Today, data retention is still a practice that is utilized by many. However, its popularity has decreased as individuals have sought to limit the data loads that they are carrying and responsible for in their work and home life. With new threats to data constantly arising, individuals and businesses have now begun to increasingly look into options for limiting their data liability level.

Data destruction is utilized by many individuals and businesses to simplify the storage of the data. One of the primary benefits of data destruction is that it allows individuals and businesses to limit and avoid risk. Today the accumulation of data is constant and for the most part unnecessary. The safe elimination of data reduces the risk that information will be tampered with by individuals that should not have access to the information, and it reduces the amount of time and money required for individuals to dig through piles of information at later dates. Through creating a strategic plan that limits the types and amounts of data that are kept, liability can be limited and convenience can be increased as data is kept to manageable levels.

Data retention vs. data destruction is a decision that individuals and businesses must carefully consider to ensure that they are finding the best solution for their unique needs. Finding the right balance between these two options is a constant struggle that must be identified and addressed so that data is able to be used and stored effectively and appropriately.

Data destruction is clearly the best solution to make sure sensitive information does not get in the wrong hands. Tristar Shredding provides on site document shredding in Houston and surrounding areas. Give us a call and find out how we can help solve this problem for you!

Why Should Our Company Shred?

paper-shredding4-300x132Many industries and economy sectors are required by law to use professional paper and document shredding services. These industries include medical entities, like hospitals and healthcare centers, as well as legal and government agencies. These companies and agencies are required by law to carefully monitor the trail of the documents, including personal information as well as other sensitive documents, and to also ensure their physical destruction according to specific regulations. The companies are obliged to choose a professional document and paper shredding company. These companies are fully certified to destroy any type of document, whether it is stored on digital devices or on paper. 

If you ever wondered “why should our company shred?”, here is a list of how this service works and why it is beneficial for your company:

1. A professional paper shredding company is a far better choice than a normal office paper shredder. They are fully equipped with industrial shredders and they have a team of professionals that will pick up your documents regularly. Your information is protected at all times and discretion is their top priority.

2. They offer complete and guaranteed destruction of every type of document, including hard drives, laminated documents, paper documents and any other materials. The employees will never handle the documents and will not be able to see or study the sensitive documents during the destruction process. The whole system is automated and the waste is recycled.

3. Depending on the quantity of paper, type of paper and the frequency of shredding, you can get a great price offer. The location of the company, its size and the type of activity is also important when getting a price quote.

4. The safety element always comes first for a professional paper shredding company. Because these companies must follow a strict set of guidelines, they will provide you with great safety measures. For instance, they will give you a special enclosed box where you can deposit your documents until the destruction process. The box is locked to ensure complete safety at all times. After the destruction, you will get a certificate of destruction that will attest the process. The certificate can be shown to customers who may be concerned about their private information.

5. Professional paper and document destruction companies can destroy even your electronic devices, such as laptop computers, desktop computers, hard drives, voice recorders and other storage devices. Just like other documents, you will receive a valid certificate of destruction.

Give us a call today at Tristar Shredding to ensure that your company is properly handling documents with sensitive information.

Is My Business Legally Required to Shred Information?

cd shreddingIt seems that there are a lot of businesses out there which instead of destroying private documents, are actually throwing them away in the garbage bin. However, while this may be something acceptable according to the company’s policy, it actually is quite dangerous for both the company and the client, since the documents they usually throw away contain private and sensitive information that can be used fraudulently. In these cases, it’s generally recommended that the documents are shredded, but some people think this is illegal. Tristar Shredding, the on site document shredding Houston, has the solution to this problem! So is my business legally required to shred information?

Data Protection Act

Well, it seems that according to the Data Protection Act, any organization or company that deals with documents which contain sensitive or private information that can be used fraudulently by a third party, should discard them by using a shredder. If any organization or company out there breaches this act, then they can face criminal charges and may need to financially compensate the people whose documents they improperly discarded which eventually got in the wrong hands and were used for criminal purposes.

To put it shortly, the improper discarding of documents generally leads to what is more commonly known as “identity theft”. In the last few years, this issue has become more and more common, with tens of thousands of people finding out they need to pay off loans they didn’t take out and credit cards they barely used.

Professional shredding services

It’s true that some companies cannot or just don’t want to acquire a shredder in order to get rid of the important client documents instead of disposing of them in the garbage bin, but the good news is that in this case they can use shredding services. This means that a team of professionals will come to their premises and then take on the task of shredding their documents on the spot.

Therefore, if you’re a company that deals with sensitive documents on a daily basis and are currently asking yourself “Is My Business Legally Required to Shred Information?” then you know now just how important document shredding is for both you and your clients. In fact, if something goes wrong and someone gets his hands on one of your client’s private files, your client will then need to spend around three hundred hours to put their records straight, not to mention the fact that you’re most likely going to be sued shortly after.

To protect your company from being liable for information getting in the wrong hands, call Tristar Shredding today, the mobile shredding service in the Houston area. We have a solution to protect your company from any liability.