What to Shred: An Insiders Guide to Shredding Documents

Posted by Ray Barry

As a company that provides professional document shredding services, we often come across people expressing that they’re not sure what to shred. Most individuals and company leaders know they need to be mindful of safety when it comes to disposing of documents containing confidential, sensitive information, and other paper materials containing information identity thieves love to her their hands on, but they’re not sure how far to go.

This understandably leaves people feeling overwhelmed, and they most likely put the project off for “one day”. The short answer for what to shred is that it’s better to be safe than sorry, but we’ve compiled a thorough list of exactly what needs to be properly shredded to avoid identity theft, workplace fraud issues, and potential lawsuits and fines for non-compliance.

What to Shred

Essentially, any documents that contain your or someone else’s sensitive information need to be thoroughly shredded as soon as they’re no longer needed. What qualifies as sensitive information?

See our list below for what to shred to avoid being at risk.

Personal Information
  • Addresses
  • ATM receipts
  • Bank account information
  • Brokerage account information
  • Cancelled and voided checks
  • Credit and debit card numbers
  • Credit reports
  • Drivers’ license numbers
  • Employee pay stubs
  • Employee records
  • Insurance policy data
  • Investment documents
  • Medical and dental records
  • Passport numbers
  • Resumes
  • Social Security numbers
  • Telephone numbers
  • Tax forms
  • Travel itineraries
  • Used airline tickets
Files & Records
  • Account records
  • Audits
  • Bank Information
  • Competitive information
  • Computer records
  • Contracts
  • Correspondences
  • Diligence files
  • Fax machine ribbons
  • Financial records
  • Insurance records
  • Property records
  • Internal memos
  • Invoices
  • Legal documents
  • Market research
  • Official notices
  • Payroll records
  • Personnel files
  • Phone records
  • Price lists
  • Purchase receipts
  • Sales forecasts
  • Tax records
  • Training information
  • X-rays

Simply throwing away or recycling documents with these types of confidential information makes you or your company an easy target for a variety of threats. Document shredding is a quick, inexpensive way to ensure your or your client’s or patient’s information never ends up in the wrong hands. For questions or help getting started, contact Shred America during normal business hours by calling us at (866) 747-3387 or contacting us here on our site.