Storage & Shredding: Expert Advice

The Hidden Hazards of Self-Storage

Posted by Sean Kelly on Thu, Apr 06, 2017 @ 02:51 PM

Walk into any office, and you’ll most likely see file cabinets lining hallways and boxes filling offices. Finding enough space to store business records is a concern for any budget minded organization. As a result, “inexpensive” public or “mini-storage” options have become a default option for many small businesses. Knowing the risks associated with storing your business records in a self-storage unit can help you make an informed decision about what’s best for your retention needs.

Water damage and mold are common to many self-storage facilities. Improper drainage, leaky roofs and condensation are the most frequent contributors. These factors can contribute to permanent loss of the data contained within critical business records. Even if your business is not bound by specific regulatory requirements, improper protection of archival records can result in legal headaches that may prove costly to your business.

Another problem with storing your business records in a self-storage unit is the lack of security protocols and processes. One never knows the risks associated with the unit next to yours. Most self-storage units can be accessed at any hour with no identification. It’s no wonder that illegal activity and robbery have become commonplace at these businesses.

Fortunately, by choosing a respected Records and Information Management Company like Safeguard Records Management, you can avoid these risks. As a company that specializes in document storage we have a stake in protecting your information. As a result, a combination of document protection and preservation equipment, comprehensive security systems and expert staff ensures that your documents and files are safeguarded throughout their retention period. In addition, Safeguard can deliver your files right to your office, saving you the time and expense of having to send someone to locate and retrieve your records. In almost all cases, we can save you over 50% in the monthly storage cost alone. Coupled with the convenience and added security measures, the cost savings are immeasurable.

Tags: Records management, document management, compliance, document storage, Document Archiving, archiving

Records Management for Legal Professionals

Posted by Arielle Burdulis on Fri, Jun 22, 2012 @ 01:42 PM

Legal As a legal professional, you generate tons and tons of files and confidential client information. Your industry or professional associates counsels you on what you should be doing with this information, how long you should keep it for, and when it can  disposed of. Implementing the safe-keeping and safe destruction of your files though, is what is not so straight forward. Your private information is sacred to you, and you are probably weary of letting it out of your sight and handing it off to some self-storage company or leaving it unsecured in the office basement, as you should be. Then when it comes time to destroy those files of yours whose retention time is up, do you have the office intern sit at a paper shredder and manually feed your papers into an office shredder? How are those "shreds" then disposed of? Hopefully not in the dumpster.

As you can see, there are a lot of questions that arise even with the counsel of your industry advising you on what files to keep and for how long. To get rid of your headache, that is where records management company comes in. A reputable records management company can provide safe, and secure storage in climate controlled conditions where your files can be kept for the remainder of their retention period. When that retention period ends, a reputable records management company will also be able to provide certified shredding where after the shredding, the shreds are recycled so that no traces of your information exist except for the white pulp that may then be used again to fulfill one's morning coffee desires.

Find out what a Records Management company can do for YOU....

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Tags: legal file shredding, Massachusetts State Laws, Boston, Office Records Destruction, 93I, 93H, non-compliance, Legal file archiving, compliance, Document Archiving, Records Storage boston, records storage worcester, identity theft, legal file storage, archiving

Never Want to Have to Spring Clean your Documents Again?

Posted by Sean Kelly on Thu, Apr 26, 2012 @ 03:00 PM

grassIt's that time of year again, time for spring cleaning. Usually most people spend daunting days and countless hours organizing their documents every year, but we think that should change. Instead of having everything pile up each year waiting to steal your precious spring days away from you to organize it all, why not implement a plan, a document organization plan, that would allow you to never have to waste spring days again??

We'll do you one better than just telling you that you should formulate a plan, we'll GIVE you the plan! And its SIMPLE! What could be better? If you follow our three-step plan, we know that these three steps will bring you closer to free spring days and futher away from docu-disaster.

Step 1: Digitize. When you come across important documents or files, scan them. Save them on a hard drive, disk, or flash drive. Ensure that these are all secure electronic storage methods by password protecting documents. If you can do this daily or even weekly and get into the habit of it, you will thank yourself in the long-run.

Step 2: Decide. So you've digitized important files. Now you need to decide whether or not the document should have a hard copy stored or if the document is safe to be securely shredded.

Step3: DO! Once you have decided to either store the documents or shred the documents, DO IT!

Having a certified and secure document shredding and archiving vendor can not only help to save you time in that you don't have to shred the documents yourself and office space in not having to store your documents on-site, but a vendor makes it easy to get in the habit of storing and shredding. If you have a box of documents you need to add to your storage account, just give them a call and they should be able to retrieve your box, barcode it, add it to your inventory, and securely store it for you.  They should also be able to deliver any documents or files to you upon request. A vendor that stores your documents as well as shreds them is a blessing. Usually, a vendor can provide you with locked, slit-top shredding bins or console that can be placed in your office that you can place sensitive documents into whenever you come across them. Change out of full bin or console for an empty one is just a phone call away.

So now you've got a plan. Give us a call and lets get started!

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A Resolution for Records Management

Posted by Sean Kelly on Tue, Jan 10, 2012 @ 11:25 AM
 

New years resolutionAs the memories of our New Year's celebrations begin to fade, all too often so do our memories of our New Year's resolutions. However, no matter how easy it is to slide back into old habits, the New Year is an excellent time to work on making yourself better. The same goes for records management. Now is the perfect time to create a set of resolutions for proper record storage, retrieval, and document shredding. In that spirit, here are our suggestions:

Resolution 1 – We Will Assume All Paper Has Potentially Private Information

No matter how hard you train your employees on NPI procedures, mistakes happen. A document gets mis-filed, or a worker jots down a social security number on scrap paper because their computer locked up.  And, document shredding is cheap. If you shred everything when it's no longer needed, you can't risk an NPI violation, and it reduces your storage and retrieval costs too. An added perk is that most reputable shredding companies recycle all of the paper they shred!

Resolution 2 – We Will Remember That Electronic Records Need Management Too

Yes, having everything computerized makes record storage and retrieval easier, but computers also enable poor records management too. Without physical paper around, filing and destruction deadlines can pass unnoticed. Make sure that your electronic records are policed as carefully as your paper documents.

Resolution 3 – We Will Properly Organize and Barcode Everything We Store

A proper barcoding system does wonders for record storage and document retrieval. It makes final retrieval easier, and allows for a simple way to establish the chain of custody for any set of records. When tied to database software, this also allows for automated tracking of when document shredding time has come around for a particular set of records. Most of the time, if you elect to utilize the help and expertise of a records management company, they will usually either aid in, or perform, the barcoding and organization process for you.

Resolution 4 – We Will Start A Review of Our Records Management Today!

There's no time like the present. Even if you're certain that your business is current on its record storage, document shredding, and data retrieval policies, there's no harm in giving a thorough review of your policies to make sure they're being followed but most importantly, make sure that the policies you have in place are not out of date. Older procedures are not optimized to save time or money because they don’t take advantage of the services that have become more available and more attainable over the years. If you're behind on your record-keeping or you think your policies and procedures could use a tune up, now is definitely the time to start!

And if you need help, don't hesitate to contact us here at Safeguard Records Management Co.  With over fifteen years of experience in record storage and retrieval, and multiple options for secure document shredding, we can help you become fully organized no matter what field you're in.

 Click to read more information on, or request a quote for, Document Shredding and Records Storage to get started on your RM Resolution!

 

 

 

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Is Small Business Records Management really necessary?

Posted by Arielle Burdulis on Wed, Dec 07, 2011 @ 01:26 PM

Your Small Business Records Management CompanySimply put, yes, yes, and YES! Records management might seem more like something a larger company should be concerned about, but even small to mid-sized businesses need to take caution in making sure their records are safe and organized.

Records management for small businesses can range in price and available services, but, if you find a reputable records management company, they can likely give you a customized quote based on the needs and budget of a small business or office. Here are some things to consider first and why records management is so important for all businesses.

Physical or paperless?
Record keeping has seen many changes throughout the years and now businesses have the option of going paperless. The term “paperless” is misleading though, because paperless offices will likely still have important physical documents that need to be stored and retained for a certain period of time, some for the life of the business. For what is paperless (i.e.- hard drives, media tapes, etc.), a records management company can keep your digital information safe and secure.

While physical record keeping will likely always be necessary, record keeping without organization can lead to wasted time and money. This is where a reputable records management company can really do wonders for your small (or large!) business.

Organization and archiving
It might sound a little cheesy, but; an organized office is a happy office. There is less frustration and stress because everything is where it needs to be and can be found easily--a records management system does just that, even for a smaller business.

Businesses who cannot rely on dozens of employees to keep them organized need to rely on a system that can keep them constantly updated and archive their important records and information. Sometimes, smaller businesses have a bad habit of archiving and saving everything. While a good precaution, this can turn chaotic.

A records management company can help any business make sure all important documents are properly archived and organized and that unnecessary documents are shredded at the end of their retention time. And all this can be done on just about any budget.

Protection and prevention
An added benefit of having a records management company is that your documents likely be better protected from naturally occurring disasters, security compromises, and other bad scenarios. A records management company can help protect records from:

  • Fire, flood, earthquake, or other natural disasters at your office location
  • Physical Security breaches
  • Security breaches from an online attack

Even small businesses are liable for the damage that can be done from disaster and security breaches. Every company, whether it is three employees or three thousand, needs to take steps to ensure all information secure and protected.

Final notes
All in all, records management isn't just for the big guys in business. Smaller businesses can benefit from companies like Safeguard Records Management because of the specialization it affords to them.  

Here's a recap:

  • Implementing records management means small businesses will save money in the long run.
  • Everything will be properly archived and easily accessible, saving time and money.
  • Offsite services can protect and organize your records, letting you manage your business hassle-free.
  • More work can be done in the time saved and there will be better efficiency in day-to-day tasks.

Don't fall behind simply because of improper record keeping. All types of businesses benefit from properly managed records and having it done properly by professionals, no matter how large or small.

Consider it a requirement for all businesses to run smoothly and provide the best service they can to their customers without worrying about their files being where it they need to be. That only reflects poorly on the business, and no business should look unprofessional because of something that can be simply (and cheaply) fixed.

 

Tags: data protection, records, Records management, Records Retention, document management, Document Archiving, records storage, records management system, Records Storage boston, records storage worcester, Records Management companies

4 Tips for (easy!) Document Managment & Organization

Posted by Sean Kelly on Wed, Nov 23, 2011 @ 09:55 AM

Securely store or shred your documentsIf it's the end of the year/fiscal year for your office or business or you have been trying to get your paper documents organized for the past couple of year and you still have a backlog of documents and files that require cataloguing or destruction, we might be able to give you that boost of help to get your on your way to completing your records management project.

Having all of your important documents organized is essential to keeping your firm or office on-track and efficient, but the actual organization process can be tedious and painstaking. Still, it is important to keep an accurate record of your documents and to find out which documents you can safely dispose of.

An easy way to approach your end-of-the year document organization is to label your files and documents in 1 of 3 ways;

      For “Destroy"Paper shredding

 

For “Off-Site Storage”Secure off-site storage

 

For “In-House Storage”Office Storage

 

Having documents, records, patient files, and financial information organized and accounted for boosts an offices productivity and capacity. You know you need to tackle the issue, but how can you do it efficiently and at a minimal cost?

Below are four tips that can make your end-of-year document organization easier to deal with. These four tips can be done with the cooperation of a certified document shredding and storage company, allowing your firm, business, or office (and your life!) to operate as efficiently as possible with minimum interruptions.

  • Carefully classify and index documents. Before you can relocate or destroy documents, you’ll have to know what you’re dealing with. Indexing documents into the above three categories not only helps you find out exactly what documents your firm or office has but also lets you determine which documents you can safely destroy, which ones need to go into off-site storage, and which ones need to be kept on-site. Document indexing and classification also helps save you time in the future by allowing you to find the documents you need quickly and without struggle. You will also be putting in place a system that can easily be followed for years to come.

 

  • Digitize physical documents. Document digitization for use in a computer repository helps improve access and availability to important documents. Not only does this make it quicker to find what you need for legal and auditing purposes, you may be able to reduce the amount of physical paperwork you need to keep in the office and move the hard-copy records to an off-site storage facility or even have them securely destroyed if they are not needed.

 

  • Package documents for off-site storage. Off-site storage with a Records Management company frees up extra space for in-house document storage of frequently used and referred to documents and it saves you money and time when compared to self-storage where you often pay for unused space.Once you’ve segregated documents for off-site storage from sensitive material that requires destruction and materials that should be kept in the office, be sure to carefully pack and clearly label these items for future reference. Labeling is important for quickly locating stored documents for when you need to access your documents. It also aids in prompt file retrieval by your records management companies’ warehouse staff. A simple alphabetical labeling system on numbered boxes can greatly reduce the time it takes to find any document you may need and makes adding additional files to your storage boxes in the future quick and easy.

 

  • Securely shred and destroy sensitive documents. Now that you’ve gotten your necessary documents stored away, you can focus on having the rest destroyed. It is highly recommended to call on the services of a certified document shredding company to destroy sensitive and private documents. Doing so will prevent instances of confidentiality violations and industrial espionage.

 

Once you are able to implement an efficient system for your records management, any future managing will simply become easier and easier.

Click on any of the following to get a jump start on your end-of-year organization and be provided with a complete and economical solution for all of your document organization needs

 

 

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4 considerations for choosing the right Records Management Vendor

Posted by Sean Kelly on Fri, Nov 04, 2011 @ 03:00 PM

What to consider when choosing a records management vendor?Records management may be the most important business service that you've never heard of. In an era of increasing identify theft and more stringent regulations, however, it's time to get the facts on this important industry.

 


If your company handles or stores customer information like names, addresses, medical records, Social Security or bank account numbers, then finding a safe, secure way to both manage and dispose your office's paperwork isn't optional—it's mandated by law.  Depending on your industry, your business may be subject to federal laws like HIPAA or the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, but state regulations often also apply. Some regs, like Massachusetts General Laws 93H and 93I, require companies to have written procedures that outline how paper and electronic files are secured on a day-to-day basis, as well as how they will be destroyed once they are no longer needed. When companies fail to meet these basic standards, they can be subject to prosecution and end up paying significant fines—sometimes per record.
A secure records management system starts with the right vendor
Here's where a Records Management System (RMS) comes in. These services come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but their purpose is essentially the same: to help companies manage their paper and electronic records in such a way that sensitive information is secured and properly stored, and remains accessible if needed in the future. A typical Records Management vendor will offer some (if not all) of the following services:

  • Site analysis and compliance documentation
  • Secure, off-site record storage for paper files
  • Online access to storage inventory
  • Scheduled document destruction services, one-time or ongoing
  • Document imaging for digital storage and retrieval
  • Disaster recovery planning

Of course, not all Records Management vendors are created equal. There are any number of companies to choose from—not all of whom can handle the job successfully.  Take the time to evaluate each vendor carefully, and consider the following:

NAID Certification
National Association for Information DestructionThe National Association for Information Destruction (NAID) offers training and certification for Records Management professionals. Records Management vendors with this credential have completed extensive training and have pledged to follow the standards and ethical practices of the NAID organization.



Compliance
A reputable Records Management vendor should know immediately what procedures your business needs to follow to be in compliance with federal and state laws. Educate yourself ahead of time regarding your particular industry so that you know whether their recommendations are on-target.

Security Issues
Secure storageLearn how the vendor you are considering secures its own facilities. Ask what safeguards are in place for physical files, as well as digitally stored information. Be sure that the company has a definite policy regarding employee background checks. Every employee, but especially those with direct contact with sensitive information, should be thoroughly checked before gaining access to your company's files.

Customer Service
The Records Management vendor you choose should provide evidence of their commitment to customer service. Consider how responsive and flexible the vendor has been during the sales process: Were they easy to reach? Able to offer scalable solutions to your particular company? Was their pricing competitive? Next, ask for references and determine whether or not existing customers are satisfied with their level of service. Finally, determine what procedures are in place to ensure that the vendor is accessible when needed. 24/7 online access to your records is an absolute requirement.

A reputable, service-oriented Records Management vendor will lower your company's risk exposure, reduce document storage costs and allow you to focus on growing your business. Take the time to evaluate your current and future records management needs—and then find the vendor who is right for the job.

 

Tags: Records management, Boston, Office Records Destruction, Federal FACTA, Records Retention, non-compliance, destruction, document management, compliance, Document Archiving, federal regulations, records management system, worcester shredding, archiving, new laws

The 5 W's for a little Fall File Cleaning (Tips Included!)

Posted by Sean Kelly on Wed, Oct 05, 2011 @ 03:23 AM

Every business and service provider that keeps paper records should be doing a good inventory of their information on a regular basis. It's easier said than done, right? Naturally, one needs to know What should they be cleaning out, When do they need to keep it until, Where are they going to store and/or shred it, Why do they need to store and/or shred it? Get the answers to your 5 W's to make your fall cleaning a breeze!

Who? Who should be taking a look at the records in that stack of boxes building up in their office? Again, any business or service provider that puts information on paper. But for starters, anyone who has yet to do a good clean out this year (2011) should do so. Also, those who are ending, or starting, a fiscal year should start fresh by getting old files into storage and shredding unnecessary files or file duplicates in order to cut down on the amount of paper you have going into storage.

By making sure you go through your files at least once a year, you are able to quickly and efficiently sort through paperwork that is fresh in your mind and you can quickly decide if it is vital to your business or not. If you end up waiting longer than a year, the chances are that when you revisit the files, it will take you longer for you to determine whether or not the records are vital and who wants to waste time? Time equals money so hunker down, and get it done. You will be glad you did it in the end.

*Quick tip- by having a secure destruction container in your office, you can routinely get rid of sensitive information as you come across it in your daily work. A bin for ongoing destruction will decrease the overall amount of information that piles up waiting to be sorted through in a good seasonal cleaning! (See the end of this article for more information on secure bin rotations)

What should you be cleaning out? This question take a little bit more consideration because different industries have different types of files, documents, and records that they need to keep for a certain period of time and thus, this question also requires the When question to be answered too.

  • Tax Records- 7 years after the tax year that the records are from.
  • Patient/Client Records- Dependent upon what the records are- Medical Records are kept by a care provider for 7 years after last treatment date or 3 years after the patients death. If a patient requests a copy of their medical records, they are entitled to it and may keep it for however long they like. Legal Records-sometimes are kept indefinitely or for a period of at least 7 years. If a client requests a copy of their legal records, they are entitled to it and may keep if for however long they like.
  • Financial Documents (Checks, invoices, statements, expenses, donations, cash records, loan records, etc.)- 6 years or until after an audit it performed. After the time period, financial records are to be shredded.
  • Corporate Records (meeting minutes, reports, articles of association / incorporation)- One copy of corporate records are archived for the life of the company.

  • Purchase orders- 3 years from date of purchase.

  • Inventories- Until the next inventory, obsolete inventories should be shredded.

  • Personnel/HR files- 7 years after the end of employment.

  • Invoices/Accounts Payable- 6 years from date on invoice.

  • Accounts Receivable- 6 years from date received.

  • Contracts- Under seal- 12 years after expiration; not under seal- 6 years after expiration.

  • Insurance Plans- Policies are kept 3 years after renewal, Settlements- 7 years after claims, schedules- 10 years.

After you have figured out what you need to keep, shred, and store, you need to determine Where you are going to store the information. Naturally, you will want to also shred your necessary documents with the same RM that you chose to store your documents to save time and money. Necessary documents should be kept in filing cabinets in the office. To reduce the risk of having too many unnecessary files in the office, only keep a few filing cabinets. That way, you will be forced to go through your older files in order to put them into long term storage with your RM partner. Your RM partner should also have access rooms available for you to access your boxes of files when necessary to either retrieve files or pick out obsolete files for shredding.

Last but most certainly not least, Why is all of this necessary? Properly storing and shredding of sensitive client, business, and personal information is not only a good practice, it is the law.

Massachusetts data protection laws 93H and 93I require entities to safeguard any and all Social Security numbers, Driver's License Numbers, financial account numbers, and credit or debit card numbers. Entities are required to have a written policy stating how the named documents are safeguarded; the written policy could name your RM as how you go about safeguarding these documents.

Overall, the job might not be pretty, it might not be fun, but a good fall cleaning will not only put your business in a better position, it's good for the mind, body, and wallet! Yes, wallet. By ensuring that you stay on top of your record managing, you will save countless hours of time for those who are fit to do the job (ie. usually executives or higher ups that get paid top dollar). Also, by cutting down the amount of files you put into storage by having them shredded, you are paying a one-time shredding cost rather than additional monthly cost for the space taken up by unnecessary files. Get all of your RM needs squared away before the cold weather and holidays come. You will be glad you did!

Learn what an town hall discovered that they were glad they kept around when they were doing a little records managing of their own.... http://columbiamissourian.com/stories/2009/04/13/court-documents-reveal-sturgeons-past/

If you are looking for more money-saving practices that your business can implement, looking into bin rotations for ongoing destruction might be something to do. By having a secure destruction bin in your office which has a slit-top container, you can routinely get rid of your sensitive documents by placing them in the locked bin. When your container is full, just have the bin rotated... its that simple! No strict rotation schedule, no bin fees, two convenient sizes, and just a one time flat rotation fee only when your bin is full, how can you go wrong?

For more information of Legal records pertaining to Massachusetts residents, please visit:

www.mass.gov/obcbbo/trash2.htm

 

For more information on the 93H and 93I laws, please visit: 

www.safeguardrecords.com/law-affecting-your-business


For More information about Safeguard Records Management and how they can provide you with records management solutions, please visit:

http://www.safeguardrecords.com/

 




 

Tags: Massachusetts State Laws, Purging, ongoing rotations, Document Archiving, Fall Cleaning, federal regulations

Records Management & Staying Green: Green Tips for the Office

Posted by Sean Kelly on Wed, Oct 05, 2011 @ 03:22 AM

Easy Being GreenWe all know that being green is important, it can help the environment and that we should be doing it. The "tough" part is putting that theory into practice, especially in the office where you might want to implement green initiatives but since no one else has hopped on the green scheme, it's a seemingly impossible task. So how do you get everyone to realize that being green is not that difficult? That takes a little bit of exploring.

To start, we all know that a "paper-less" office is not in the near future, at all. Back in the 1980's there was talk about a paper-less office and look where we are three decades later, still using paper! That is where being green comes in. Instead of trying to use no paper at all, we have realized that it is OK to use paper and that all we have to do is keep in mind some simple tips for staying green and reducing our paper consumption, not nixing it. When you and others in the office do so, you will soon see how the amount of paper and other materials that you use drastically decreases. And these tips are so easy, just posting them around the office is bound to get people on board (even better, send an e-mail to reduce paper consumption!).

The key to being able to implement green initiatives in your office is to have a trusted and quality records management provider. A partner that realizes the same "be green" theme that your office does (or plans to) and recycles all of the material from your office after it is shredded as well as aids you in staying on track with your records retention schedule. Once you have partnered up with your RM, how green your office actually becomes starts with YOU.

So what can you do to make an impact and reduce your footprint?

1. Reduce the amount of paper you produce and thus reduce the amount that is shredded saving time, money, and energy. To do this, create a plan that determines what types of documents are to be printed and what documents should be kept as electronic files. Also, determine what types of documents can be scanned and sent to colleagues rather than making paper copies for them. Make sure everyone gets an e-mail about this!

2. Do double sided printing when printing is necessary. Use any misprints as scrap or notepaper.

3. Use stick labels in the top corners of faxes rather than creating a fax cover sheet from a whole piece of paper.

4. Over time, by reducing the amount of paper you produce, you in turn reduce the probability of duplicate record which will then reduce the total amount of records that you end up having to put in storage (or shred if you actually end up finding the duplicate record before it gets boxed up for storage).

This overall decrease in paper production will save your office money in paper costs which will carry over to a lesser production of paper which means less records management cost to you!

Remember, implementing one or two easy to follow simple steps for being green is more likely to get people to actually do them rather than a long and daunting hard to follow list that may actually turn people off to the idea.

Other tips for keeping green around the office:

  • Buy paper with the highest percentage post-consumer recycled content
  • Use unbleached and uncolored paper
  • Shut down all computers at night and put printers and faxes on sleep mode
  • Order office supplies in bulk to reduce the amount of packing material needed for your shipments
  • Carpool with others from the office if they live close to you
  • Bring in your own mug for coffee in the morning rather than using disposable cups (this carries on to your own silverware, dishes, etc.)
  • If applicable to the office, have one day that everyone works from home (either a Monday or a Friday) to reduce energy consumption at the office and safe fuel 



For more tips on staying green in the office (including where to buy green office supplies) and how to reduce your overall carbon footprint everyday, please visit to following sites:

http://www.treehugger.com/

http://www.thegreenoffice.com/



 

Tags: shredding, carbon footprint, Records Retention, recycling, Saving money, Document Archiving, Fall, Green Initiatives, reducing cost, saving energy

Important New Data Protection Laws Regarding Sensitive Information

Posted by Arielle Burdulis on Thu, Nov 05, 2009 @ 06:28 AM

What are 93H & 93I?

Laws Affecting your business

Massachusetts General Law 93H
93H requires all businesses in Massachusetts to take serious measures to prevent identity theft. Any business holding the name of a Massachusetts resident and their Social Security Number, Driver’s License Number, or financial account number (including credit or debit card numbers) is subject to this new Massachusetts data protection law.

What are you required to do?

Among the compliance standards for this new data protection law include the following:

A written comprehensive information security program (CISP).

Controls on employees’ access of sensitive information, including physical security safeguards, computer user access levels and user authentication protocols.

Security measures on computer information systems, including data encryption, anti-virus and anti-spyware software, and firewalls.

Periodic review of audit trails and monitoring of systems for unauthorized access.
Proper disposal of sensitive information, as outlined in new Massachusetts data protection laws.
Massachusetts General Law 93I.

93I requires the shredding or destruction of any paper files containing sensitive information and the erasure or destruction of any electronic files or data storage devices containing personal information of employees or customers.

93I also requires a written policy regarding the disposal of sensitive information.

What are the penalties? 


A violation of 93H levies fines of up to $5000 per record compromised.

A violation of 93I levies fines of up to $100 per record compromised with a maximum of $50,000.

This does not take into consideration the loss of your company’s hard-earned reputation and the potential loss of credit.

Safeguard can help guide you through compliance. Call Sean at 508.795.1015 for a Free Assessment, email Sean at operations@safeguardrecords.com or log onto www.safeguardrecords.com for industry specific information.

 

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