January 23, 2013

Shredding Your Identity

This is what I use to shred sensitive paper documents, batteries not required

We live in a world where your garbage can end up leading to a drained bank account or stolen identity. There was a time that Linda and I contemplated getting a paper shredder, but in the end we couldn't  bring ourselves to purchase such a limited, single use item. So how to deal with the threat of stolen garbage?

For a long while we were setting aside sensitive documents in what we called our "burn box". 

The plan was to go out into the bush, have a campfire, and enjoy a ceremonial burning of the contents of the box. 

But we wondered if there was a better way to deal with our paper documents without buying a shredder, or adding C02 to the atmosphere.

We discovered a local industrial strength paper shredding company that takes paper and shreds it in what I assume are super-shredders.

Even better, after the company shreds the documents, it turns them into 100% post-consumer toilet paper. I can't think of a better use for our old bills.

Since we turned our top secret documents into toilet paper, we have instigated some changes making shredding mostly unnecessary.
  • We are going paper free. We switched from paper documents to digital alternatives. Businesses will email receipts and many documents can be accessed on line. 
  • We use scissors, our low-tech shredder. This shredder can be used for an infinite number of tasks including sewing, pizza cutting, as well as reducing top secret information into unreadable strips. For any documents that do make their way to us, we use scissors to do the shredding. But only the bits containing names, addresses, and account numbers. When removed, they are a small portion of the overall document and can easily be sliced and diced into obscurity. 

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