Your business and personal security transcends the digital world. Online security has a physical component that, if ignored, can adversely affect your life just as much as (or more than) a digital data breach. For example, papers often contain confidential information that you must protect. That’s why you’ve asked, “What’s the best high security paper shredder?”
What’s the best high security paper shredder?
All paper shredders are not equal.
Types of Paper Shredders
Paper shredders vary based on how they shred paper.
Have you ever seen a shredder that cuts papers into long strips? Hackers, snoops, government agents, and corporate spies can easily tape together those strips and glean information from them.
If you have a crosscut shredder, you have more security than if you had a strip shredder. If you look at the shreddings, however, you will notice that the clippings frequently contain legible information.
A more-recent breed of shredder, micro-cut shredders, has recently become affordable for small businesses and households. These shredders reduce pages to tiny pieces that are practically impossible to reassemble. For this reason, micro-cut shredders usually offer an enhanced level of security.
What are shredder security levels?
To help you shop for a shredder that meets your security requirements, manufacturers use a standard rating scale. That way, you can compare products from different manufacturers.
Shredder security levels can also help you meet the privacy requirements of your family and clients.
Right now, paper-shredder ratings vary from P-1 to P-7. As the numbers increase, your security improves.
Don’t bother with a P-1 shredder. Anyone can easily tape together the half-inch wide strips of paper left behind by shredders at this level. You probably won’t find many of these for sale, but you might find one given as a novelty gift or free giveaway.
Your basic, inexpensive shredder may have a P-2 security level. Anyone from your children to a commercial spy can easily tape these pieces together, regardless if your P-2 shredder is a strip-cut or cross-cut model. Strips cut by a P-2 shredder have a width of 1/4″ or less. They contain plenty of surface area to expose private information.
You might get by with a P-3 shredder to stay HIPPA and FACTA compliant. However, regulations may change. A P-3 strip shredder creates pieces that are about 2mm wide.
P-4 shredders use cross-cutting blades to reduce pages into small pieces. In most cases, P-4 is the minimum security level you should consider for your home or office.
Security Level P-5 converts your paper into exceptionally small-sized bits that even highly skilled professionals can’t reassemble. Thatnks to technology, the cost of P-5 shredders has come down, making them affordable for small businesses and households.
We are about to recommend to you a P-5 shredder that reduces pages to 2mm x 10mm bits.
Government agencies and clandestine organizations use P-6 shredders to guarantee that nobody can glean any information from their shredded waste. Shredded P-6 pieces are about 1/64″ in
Designed to protect national security, P-7 shredders fit in well at the NSA and Department of Defense. These shredders reduce pages into dust.
How do I decide which shredder I need?
When you buy a shredder, you must balance price, security, paper feed, operating continuity, waste capacity, and speed.
Much of the time, if not most of the time, lower-security shredders shred faster than high-security shredders. If time is an issue, you may choose to sacrifice some security for speed.
If you have tons of paper to shred, choose a shredder that comes with a page feeder. The page feeder may cause a higher price tag, so, again, you may need to compromise on your selection.
You must also consider the number of pages simultaneously shredded by each unit. If you have a lot of paper to shred, you don’t want to have to feed one page at a time into the paper shredder.
Shredders generally become more expensive with an increase in number of pages they simultaneously shred.
Again, you may discover that you must balance speed, paper feed, security, and price to get the shredder that’s best for you.
Paper shredders use heavy motors that suck up electricity. As they work, they get hot. For this reason, you need to check the operational ratings of a shredder before you buy it.
The shredder we recommend will operate continuously for 120 minutes. It has a cooling system that will allow you to resume shredding after a 10-minute pause.
You can expect to pay noticeably more for your shredder if you need to shred for 4 or more hours, especially if you must have a high-security device.
If you’re like most people, you don’t want to have to stop what you’re doing to empty the shredder. To begin with, it’s inconvenient. Another problem is that you can get tiny pieces of paper scattered on the floor near your trash can.
Some shredders have good specifications, but they have a small waste storage area. You might save some money that way, but, in the long run, you’ll do better by getting a shredder with a large capacity waste bin.
Loud shredders can create an uncomfortable environment, especially when you have a lot of paper to shred. Before you buy a shredder, check its noise specifications.
Times may exist when you don’t want the whole world to know that you’re shredding documents. Again, you should consider noise as you shop.
As a point of reference, we recommend a 58 db, or quiter, shredder.
What should I shred?
Never place papers that contain personally identifiable information in the trash. If you do, trash pickup people, law enforcement agents, identity thieves, commercial spies, and fraudsters can recover valuable information from your trash.
At home you should shred:
- Credit card offers.
- Usernames and passwords.
- Bank statements.
- Old tax documents.
- Confidential correspondence.
- Budgets and financial reports.
- Anything with potentially valuable or incriminating information.
In your business, shred:
- Bank documents.
- Old invoices.
- Customer lists.
- Outdated payroll records.
- Operational documents.
- Vendor lists.
- Misprinted documents.
- Accounting reports.
- Anything with proprietary information relevant to the products and services you produce.
Do people really go through my trash?
Yes. At work, your competitors can learn your trade secrets by examining your trash.
At home, thieves can use your trash to apply for credit cards and loans.
Snoops can find out about your income and assets.
Police go through trash to collect evidence.
Criminals have thousands of reasons you might never think of to glean your personal and commercial data from your trash. Don’t make their job easy.
Bonsaii 4S23, 120-minute, P-5 Paper Shredder
You asked us, “What’s the best high security paper shredder?” Here’s our answer: We recommend the Bonsaii 4S23 shredder. This machine accepts stacks of up to 8 pages simultaneously and shreds them into 2mm x 10mm bits.
You can shred for 2 hours non-stop with the Bonsaii 4S23, a capability that’s more than ample for typical businesses and families.
Bonsaii equips their model 4S23 with a 6 gallon waste bin that’s conveniently and easily removable from the front of the unit.
A separate slot for CDs and DVDs allows you to dispose of optical media safely without tearing up your P-5 shredder. When you shred CDs and similar items, the waste goes into a separate 0.37 gallon bin that preserves your paper for recycling.
The main slot of the Bonsaii 4S23 also accepts credit cards and shreds them to P-5 standards.
The Bonsaii 4S23 shredder provides an optimal combination of convenience, speed, security, and price. Get it today using our Amazon link. You’ll check out at Amazon, sharing no personal or payment information with us.
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