The Path of Least Resistance
The “path of least resistance,” is a simple concept; things will choose the easiest path possible. Electricity for example—will always choose the path of least resistance hence, lightning, short circuits, complete circuits. Exciting stuff, yeah? Well, the concept of the “path of least resistance” is applicable to document destruction and compliance as well.
We all know what confidential means, and generally what information is—or should be—considered confidential. Most organizations are aware that these documents must be shredded to eliminate unauthorized access and reduce exposure to a high security risk. So why, then, are there so many instances where documents are found in dumpsters, trash cans, and landfills in their entirety? You would be hard pressed not to find a news broadcast recounting the story of a stranger stumbling upon confidential health records disposed of in a dumpster or a CPA firm found dumping records in the trash. Why is it that some companies find it so difficult to dispose of documents properly?
There is Usually at Least One Trash Can for Every Employee in an Office Building
The issue doesn’t seem to be the lack of knowledge or information available on proper disposal; it seems to be an overly complicated implementation or execution of a document disposal infrastructure. Many times, an organization will have great policies and procedures in place and hire a reputable destruction company and then only have one secure shred cart placed for an office of 100 employees. Imagine having one trash can in your office for more than 100 people.
Make it convenient. The same principle that applies to electricity also applies to people; they will generally follow the path of least resistance. Who do you think is more likely to shred confidential documents, someone who has a desk-side shred bin, or the guy who has to walk past a few trash cans before he comes across a secure shred bin?
Make Data Destruction Easy and Convenient for Everyone
It comes down to the proper and convenient placement of secure document destruction carts throughout your office. They should be placed in locations where you are likely to find confidential documents; near filing cabinets, in the copy room, and best yet, at everyone’s desk. The easier it is for employees to place paper in a shred bin, the more likely they are to follow your policies and procedures.
In addition to making it convenient, you must also make it easy. Maintaining a policy that ALL paper gets shredded eliminates the possibility of mistakes being made. The less time an employee spends making decisions regarding an item’s confidential merit the better. If you can tear it—secure it. As with the example above; the path of least resistance is a policy that requires ALL paper be shredded.
DataShield has a variety of secure shred carts, bins, consoles, and desk-side containers to suit your every need. Rely on the experts who have been serving businesses in Nebraska and Iowa for years with their paper shredding, records management, electronic recycling, and data destruction.