The Micro Cut Shredder for Greater Security
Keep Your Secrets With a Micro Cut Shredder
Whether you own a business or are just a home owner, there are some risks involved in allowing documents to go into your trash intact, where identity thieves and others could potentially gain access to sensitive and personal information. Social security numbers, credit card numbers, signatures, account numbers, proprietary information, and more can be used to your detriment when those who are less scrupulous gain access to it.
Shredders can increase security by making such information impossible to read. Micro cut shredders offer the highest level of security available. Rather than cutting documents into long strips, they use a cross cut which slices documents in both directions, into smaller pieces. Some cut the paper into confetti sized pieces, approximately 300-400 pieces for a 8.5 x 11 inch piece of paper. For even higher security, some of these devices shred documents into even finer particles, 1600-3000 pieces per page and finer.
Tips for Choosing the Right Device
If you're wanting a high level of security, then a micro cut shredder is obviously a good choice. When choosing a shredder, there are a few things to consider:
- Capacity and Volume
You'll want to know how much paper the shredder can handle. Some can handle 5 or 6 pages fed through at a time, others 12, and even higher. You'll also want to know how much volume it can handle at a given time before it needs to shut down and cool off. You'll need to compare it's capabilities to the volume of shredding you have to do. A micro cut shredder that can accept only three sheets of standard paper at a time and has to cool down after a few minutes of continuous operation may work in some homes but if you have greater volume, it won't be very useful.
- Shredding Ability
Certainly you'll want to determine what size particles the shredder produces to be sure it provides the level of security desired. Some shredders identified as micro cut shredders produce confetti sized particles, others produce particles that are much smaller. The price of the device often rises with the finer cuts.
You'll also want to know what the shredder will cut. Obviously they will take standard sized paper but some also have a slot for credit cards, CDs, and so forth. Some can handle staples and others can't.
Having anti-jam features is certainly a good thing as well. Ideally, the shredder will also shut down and potentially sound an alarm to alert you when a jam does occur.
Micro cut shredders obviously have very sharp blades that can pose a risk. Dangling jewelry, long hair, and loose clothing need to be kept away from the feed opening. Ideally, the shredder will feature an automatic shut off that is activated anytime the opening is touched, before any injury could occur. This is particularly important in home environments where children and pets may encounter the device while in operation.
- Convenience Features
The most routine maintenance that needs to be performed with a shredder is keeping the wastebasket emptied. A shredder that provides easy access to the basket is a first step, but having a window that allows you to see when the basket is getting full is very handy as well, so that you don't have to continually open it up to check the level. Some may offer an indicator light to let you know when it needs emptied, oiled, or something else.
Some models are quieter than others. Depending upon your environment, it may be important to determine how noisy the device will be when in operation. Reading current customer reviews can give you an indication of this. You can also peruse manufacturer information to determine the noise level.