What documents should be shredded?

Every business, large or small, will produce documents that need to be shredded. The question is: what documents should be shredded? 

Due to the GDPR updates in regulation, you could fall foul of the law if you don’t dispose of sensitive documents in a secure way and within a specific time frame. The increasing risk of identity fraud is also a reason why businesses should make sure they have a water-tight document disposal system in place. 

This blog will take you through the top ten documents you should be shredding in your office, to ensure you don’t fall victim to any disasters from misplacing any sensitive documents. Read on to find out what these are. 

1. Personnel Files 

These contain sensitive information and personal data, such as employees’ address, date of birth, employment, taxes, health care, income. For the security of you and your workforce, these items should be stored securely while they are in use or still needed and shredded once they are no longer required.

2. Financial Statements

Identity theft is a growing problem in the UK, making documents containing key personal information about a person’s identity, accounts, passwords and spending habits a goldmine for fraudsters. This type of information can be used by criminals or facility takeover fraudsters and give them access to your accounts. 

3. Customer Account Records

In addition to getting rid of key business financial statements, customer records should be handled and disposed of very carefully to meet the necessary legal requirements and to also prevent identity theft of your clients or service users. 

4. Client Lists

For the security of your clients, never throw away lists of clients’ personal details. Any documents containing data such as address, phone number and email address should be shredded by the professionals to be compliant with the law and reduce the risk of fraud.

5. Insurance Records

While you may think such documents are only useful to your business, identity thieves are always on the lookout for records such as these, so it’s vital to shred them to mitigate any risk.


6. Printed emails

These are some of the easiest documents to miss - when digital information is printed off it falls under the same regulations as other documents and should be appropriately handled. 

Printed emails in particular are a rich source of information – as a minimum they contain personal details such as job titles, names, addresses and phone numbers contained in people’s signatures, and often they have more information in the body along with times and dates.

7. Business reports

It is important to always shred sensitive internal business reports that contain KPI graphs, financial data and information on the performance of your business and your clients. 

8. Legal documents

You should always make sure you shred legal documents such as sales contracts and invoices as these could be used to exploit businesses.  

9. Employment contracts and CV’s

Again, any documents containing key details about your employees such as address and contact details should be securely shredded – don’t risk it!

10. Estimates and Bids

These often contain important financial information about your company, so it’s essential that you shred these, even if they are no longer relevant to your business.

At Changeworks Confidential, our dedicated team of professionals securely shred your sensitive business waste before it is mixed, baled, pulped and recycled back into paper, meaning our service is environmentally friendly, too. 

Get in touch today for a solution to your secure shredding needs – our friendly team would love to have a chat about your business needs.