Florida Ranked #2 For Identity Theft: 3 Ways To Protect Your Sensitive Information

Tue, Sep 29, 2020
By: Jim Beran
Florida Ranked #2 For Identity Theft: 3 Ways To Protect Your Sensitive Information

Did you know that the Federal Trade Commission ranks Florida as number 2 on the list for highest number of identity theft cases in 2017?  You can see the rankings from 2017 here

Florida businesses have rules and regulations for storing sensitive information.  This sensitive information can contain their clients information or even their employees.  However, that information can damage your company’s privacy and even the business itself if it falls into the hand of identity thieves.  And when it comes to document destruction, there are federal and state laws on how to properly dispose of data.  

Need to catch up on Florida’s regulations?  You can find rules and regulations about document retention and shredding here.

 The risks that improperly securing sensitive documents fall under include:

  • Operational 
  • Financial 
  • Reputational 
  • Security 

Financial risks can lead to monetary loss for the business. Operational risks can affect the efficiency of the business.  Loss of key documents can lead to a loss of reputation. Security risks can lead to information getting into the wrong hands.

Protect Your Businesses Sensitive Information the Right Way

Sensitive information is not just stored on paper documents.  Protecting your businesses confidential information includes proper hardware destruction and hard drive destruction along with shredding services. 

As a business owner, you can prevent troubled audits and all sorts of compliance legal problems. When it comes to taking hard drives to their final resting place, scheduling regular shredding service is the way to go.

Here are the three steps you can take to prevent identity theft of your confidential information store on paper or hard drives.

1. Setting Up Regularly Scheduled Shredding Services

Although many businesses are shifting to storing data electronically, there are still many that store paper files. Setting up a regularly scheduled shredding service with a a local shredding provider can help prevent identity thieves from access your documents.  Simply throwing documents in the trash is not enough keep them safe.

When you’re ready to dispose of paper documents, it’s important that they are properly destroyed to prevent identity theft. Here’s a list of some things that should go into the shredder.

  • Client bank information and other client information that may contain their personal information
  • Employee applications
  • Tax records
  • Credit card receipts
  • Tax returns
  • Schedule K1’s
  • Invoices

Today, it is mandated by the FTC Safeguards Rule of the GLB Act that companies undertake paper document destruction on a regular basis. 

We provide businesses that produce a high volume of paper documents with secure consoles to safely store documents awaiting destruction.  An experienced uniformed Gilmore Services technician will ensure that the data is unrecoverable and provide you with a certificate of destruction stating that all of the data has been properly erased and discarded. 

2. Destroying Old Hard Drives

You may have recently updated you computer system and had your IT department wipe all the old hard drives.  Or maybe you didn't have your team wipe them clean.  Some sensitive information may still be stored on them.  

Identity thieves can still access this information and use it against you.  As a business owner, you want to make sure that you take every measure to protect your client's and employee's information.

Whether your hard drives are in laptops, desktops or tablets, the best way to destroy old hard drives is to use a partner who is experienced in IT asset disposition. This will best protect your business and keep you in compliance with the e-waste laws. 

At Gilmore Services, we provide hard drive destruction, along with our document shredding services.  This service is quick and effective, and will provide you with piece of mind.

3. Other Ways to Protect Your Business Documents

There are many ways to protect your business documents prior to disposal. Paper documents should be in store rooms or storage cabinets with limited access. Files and documents should be labelled so that they don’t get mixed up. And outsiders should be supervised to prevent deliberate document breach.

Digital document security entails a different approach. Computer terminals should have regular maintenance to prevent breakdown and threats to document security. Long-term documents should be kept in the cloud or in a specialized digital backup.

Firewalls must be installed to prevent unsanctioned intrusions on the IT network. And external storage devices should be controlled and monitored within the workspace.

Despite the fact that document security is paramount to most businesses, some small and medium enterprises fail to pay attention to it. Don’t be one of them. Be sure to regularly engage in proper document destruction of paper files and digital files.

Contact Gilmore Services To Protect Your Sensitive Information

Gilmore Services has over 30 years of experience in information security and data destruction services.  We provide scheduled shredding services and one time purges for businesses in Northwestern Florida and Southern Alabama.

Get in contact with our personable staff today to start protecting your information the right way!