Spring Cleaning and Your Sensitive Documents
Spring brings the perfect opportunity to tidy up your Tampa home after the long winter months. It’s a great chance to tend to any forgotten housework and chores, before the exciting and relaxing days of summer set in.
Whether it’s a desk, cabinets, or an entire home office that could use organizing, sorting through your current and old personal records should be a part of your spring cleaning tasks! In doing so, the documents you may want to reference in the future will be organized easily accessible, while those records that are no longer relevant will no longer be occupying valuable space in your home.
Determine What to Shred and Recycle
To begin this process properly, it’s highly suggested you start by making two piles: a shredding pile for those sensitive documents that include personal identification details (address, telephone, account numbers, medical information etc) and/or financial records that have your banking information on them.
Sort through all records and make this important distinction by considering the below:
Make a Pile for Shredding
Bank account and credit card statements. While you may have online banking set up here in Tampa, if you don’t complete your banking activity electronically, for your security make sure you carefully review all statements and bills that come through the mail each month.
Think about what whether you need/want to store or toss away old bank statements. Keeping old statements is fine, but it’s important to ensure they are stored in a secure area if that’s the case. On the other hand, if you’ve decided that keeping these documents provides no benefit to you, be sure they are securely shredded before they are thrown away in the trash. Business Records Management in Tampa is happy to help with this.
Old bills and receipts. Determine if you need or want to keep previous bills and receipts, and where needed file appropriately. Remember that most return policies are only suitable for a short time frame; as a result, there’s no real need to hold onto these receipts for an extended time period, unless of course you need them for tax or warranty purposes.
Make a Pile for Recycling
Magazines and newsletters: If you want to keep certain articles or news pieces, simply clip and store these away in a binder or folder that’s strictly documents of this nature. Everything else can be placed in your recycling pile, as these documents present no security risk unless of course they are labeled with your contact information.
Those materials that are in fact printed with your personal contact information should definitely be handled with more care to properly protect yourself from the risks of identity theft. Criminals will sort through your trash or recycling bin in hopes to find information of value to them; this act is often known as “dumpster diving.” In an effort to secure yourself from such a dangerous act, it’s critical to shred all material that may provide someone with inside knowledge; i.e.) address, phone numbers, credit card or bank account numbers, social security number or medical information. This also includes bank and credit card statements, receipts, insurance forms, physician statements and credit offers you get in the mail. If there are any doubts, always shred!
Implement Smart Habits
Implementing smart and secure habits will not only make you feel better about yourself, it will also significantly maintain your privacy, which is crucial. Here are a few tips to keep yourself organized:
- Shred all documents that contain sensitive content.
- Keep a close eye on your mail and remove it from the mailbox immediately. Identity thieves may use this chance to sort through your personal mail for their gain.
- Reviewing your personal credit report will reveal whether or not an individual has opened unauthorized financial accounts under your name. You may obtain a free credit report from Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion at any time to be sure your personal information and financial accounts are as they should be.
If you haven’t already, consider partnering with Business Records Management in Tampa for secure document shredding solutions that guarantee your safety. Start the spring season off on the right note; keep your home office clutter-free, organized, and secure!
Contact us today for more details surrounding our services, at 888-896-6222