A recent survey by the office of the Kentucky Attorney General found that over 25% of business are in violation of the states data protection law. The office looked into the dumpsters of 121 businesses and found 33 with sensitive information that had not been shredded.
Businesses now have legal pressure along with media pressure to shred their documents. Time will tell if http://www.blogger.com/img/gl.quote.gif
insert blockquotethey implements a reliable system or just buy a shredder and hope their employees assign themselves the extra work of shredding.
Blockbuster is the latest business to get caught throwing their customers’ information into their dumpster. The Blockbuster was located in Sarasota.
The records contained the credit card numbers and financial information from customers’ as well as full employment applications including social security numbers. The records were discovered by a man looking into the dumpster.
I don’t know why there are so many people poking around dumpsters but if you are a business and think no know one will notice all the sensitive documents you are throwing out then you greatly underestimate their numbers. The troubling this is we know the ones like this that call the police but what about the people who take and then use the information for identity theft.
This makes the third story in two days about personal information in the dumpster. This time it is the Navy. Once again they left the job to a low level person with a shredder only to find them take a short cut and just dump them. The documents found include birth certificate copies, social security numbers and drug tests.
The two options for a paper shredding plan should be a shredding service that provides a document of destruction or scheduling someone to shred and an officer or manager observing the entire process. It is obvious the first option is much more cost effective.
DeKalb County police have found sensitive customer information belonging to Ameriquest in a dumpster. DeKalb County investigators describe it as boxes and boxes of tax returns, credit histories and social security numbers. They have not gone through all of the boxes but estimate the information of 1,200 people to be exposed.
Ameriquest is no longer doing business in the state of Georgia after being charged with using predatory practices. Apparently the last insult to its customers is failing to hire a shredding service and simply dumping records in the trash.
There was a failure in the paper shredding program for the City of Shelton. Documents containing sensitive personal information were discovered in the dumpster today. The documents contained the names, addresses, birth dates and Social Security numbers of city workers. Shelton Mayor Mark Lauretti is has blamed the mistake on town employees cleaning out the building.
Sorry to sound like a broken record but if you leave your paper shredding to unsupervised low level employees this is perfectly predictable.
It is always painful to watch bureaucracies turn easy decisions into a long drawn out process. It happens at every level of government but is easier to see with local governments where reporters are at every meeting.
Today gave us two great example of local governments making easy things hard. The first is in Hampshire County where Court Clerk Sonja Embrey appeared at the Hampshire County commissioners to get a contract with a local shredding service. The court currently just throws all the files away and Sonja was seeking a better solution. Unable to make the decision that protects their constituents, they tabled the topic. They want to buy an industrial shredder and if they can hire people who work for free they will be able to save money.
The second, and even more painful, example is Muskogee County. They have tons of medical files that need to be shredded and they can’t decide if watching a mobile shredder take care of the problem is secure. I wonder if they will let low level employees take the files to the basement with a small shredder and simply hope for the best.
Greg Brophy, the founder and CEO of Shred-it *, was killed in a small plane crash Sunday September 30, 2007. The accident took place in Alaska and took the lives of three others, including Greg’s eldest brother Sean Brophy. Greg is survived by his wife Tracey, and their three children, Christopher, Megan and Kirsten.
Greg was a pioneer in the document destruction industry. Shred-it * is now operating in 16 countries with 2,600 employees. His presence will be missed by the whole industry.
* Shred Nations has no relationship to Shred-it or its owners.