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NOV 30

We’ve Raised Nearly $100,000 Towards Breast Cancer Research

Years ago, in collaboration with the Susan G. Komen® organization of Northwest Ohio, we established the Shred Cancer program. This program was the first of its kind in the country for a document destruction company. As a participant, you establish a donation amount of your choosing and we’ll match it dollar-for-dollar every time we pick up your bins. All participating customers have the option of choosing a pink shred bin, or any other standard shred bin.

Breast Cancer research is a long and expensive process. It can take well over 15 years and $5 billion to translate a discovery in the lab into a new drug that can be used by patients. At Komen, they have a rigorous review process for selecting research grants, called peer-review. Peer-review is a grant review process used by many organizations, including the National Institutes of Health, to determine which research grants will be funded. By using this rigorous process, Komen strives to fund the very best research – funding projects that have the potential to advance the field and have an impact on patients as rapidly as possible.

To date, their research dollars have helped support more than:

  • 2400 research grants in 49 states and 20 countries
  • 460 clinical trials
  • 300 research advocates
  • 60 partnerships and collaborations
  • 60 scientific conferences

Like Nancy Brinker’s promise to her sister Susan, our goal is to end breast cancer forever. To date, we’ve raised nearly $100,000 towards breast cancer research. That’s right – one-hundred thousand dollars.

To participate in our Shred Cancer program, fill out our online form here, or call us at 419-244-7473. Together, we can end cancer forever.

Posted in News, Shred Cancer | Tagged , , , ,
NOV 16

The Fear of Identity Theft is Increasing Year Over Year

According to a recent study by Generali Global Assistance, worry about identity theft is now on par with common concerns such as illnesses and car accidents. In fact, more people are becoming concerned about identity theft year over year. Per the study, 31% of U.S. consumers are very worried about being a victim of identity theft, whereas only 22% are worried about their home being robbed. In 2014, only 20% of people expressed fear of identity theft. Today, 32% express fear of identity theft.

Paige Schaffer, President and COO of Generali Global Assistance’s Identity and Digital Protection Services Global Unit, commented on today’s news, “Fear of becoming an identity theft or cybercrime victim is on the rise, and consumers are concerned with the impact these crimes can have on their lives.  With 2017 on pace to reach an all-time high of reported data breaches, businesses and consumers alike need to be more prepared than ever to mitigate associated risks.  The infographic published today, as well as the variety of initiatives in which we have been engaged to support National Cyber Security Awareness Month, demonstrate our commitment to education so that everyone is armed with the information necessary to combat identity theft.”

To learn more about contributors to this growing fear, view the infographic published by Generali Global Assistance below:

Posted in Identity Theft | Tagged , , , , , ,
OCT 31

A Quick Guide on How Long to Keep Sensitive Documents Before Shredding Them

We all have important documents we’re holding on to for dear life. Often, we don’t even ask the question, “When is it time to shred these?”

If you have a filing cabinet at home, filled with old tax returns, bank statements, utility bills and more, it’s time to learn how long you should be keeping these sensitive documents on hand.

Here’s a quick guide to help you out:

Tax Returns:

Generally, for IRS audit purposes, a good rule of thumb is to hold on to tax returns for at least seven years. However, some of the more aggressive taxpayers will hold on to their tax returns indefinitely. For most of us, the seven-year rule works just fine.

Bank Statements:

Do you have a bunch of ATM and deposit statements laying around? Jump online and verify these transactions have gone through properly, or check any paper statements sent by your banking institution. Once verified, go ahead and shred these documents – you won’t need them. Retain your paper bank statements for at least one year. If you need to support business expenses, hold on to these statements for at least three years or longer for verification purposes. To qualify for Medicaid or a mortgage, save statements for three years or longer too.

Investments:

Hold on to your monthly brokerage statements for an entire year. After the one-year mark passes, keep your annual summary statement for your personal records and shred the monthly statements. If you receive letters about any changes to your portfolio, hold on to these until you receive your next statement. After that, feel free to shred these documents as well.

Credit Card Statements:

Monthly credit card statements can be sent to the shredder after one year.

 Medical and Dental Bills:

Often, it’s okay to shred your medical bills after one year if your health issues have subdued and all payments are up-to-date. If you’re claiming medical expenses on a tax return however, hold on to these alongside your tax returns.

Utility Bills:

Shred utility bills after you’ve made a payment. If you’re self-employed, hold on to these documents for longer for tax purposes.

It’s inevitable that at some point, you’ll need to shred your sensitive documents. When that time comes, give us a call at 419-244-SHRED, or 800-747-3341. To learn more about our document destruction services offered, visit us at https://accushred.net/document-destruction-toledo-ohio.php

Posted in Secure Shredding | Tagged , , ,
OCT 18

New Medicare Cards to Protect Senior Citizens from Identity Theft

We talk about identity theft protection a lot. Why wouldn’t we? We’re in the business of destroying your most sensitive information, further protecting you from identity theft. But not all sensitive information is ready to be destroyed. In fact, some of your most sensitive information is with you every day.

Take Medicare for instance. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) distributes Medicare cards to people ages 65 and over daily. For reasons beyond our understanding, the recipient’s social security number is printed right on the card itself and serves as the unique identifier for medical professionals to access their information and coverage. If you’re like most people who care about protecting your social security number, you simply leave your social security card at home unless you absolutely need it. This poses a major threat to senior citizens who carry their Medicare card with them wherever they go. Luckily, CMS has made a major announcement to change this.

In September, CMS gave the public its first look at the newly designed Medicare card. The new card contains a unique, randomly-assigned number that replaces the current Social Security-based number (https://www.cms.gov/Newsroom/MediaReleaseDatabase/Press-releases/2017-Press-releases-items/2017-09-14.html).

CMS will begin to mail the new cards in April 2018 to meet the statutory deadline for replacing all existing cards by April 2019.

“The goal of the initiative to remove Social Security numbers from Medicare cards is to help prevent fraud, combat identify theft, and safeguard taxpayer dollars,” said CMS Administrator Seema Verma. “We’re very excited to share the new design.”

With the rise in identity theft over the last few years (especially in the medical field), this step forward by CMS will greatly benefit all Medicare members.

When it’s time to destroy those old cards, don’t forget to do it the right way. Learn more here: https://accushred.net/document-destruction-toledo-ohio.php

Posted in Identity Theft | Tagged , , , ,
SEP 29

The Equifax Data Breach

One of the nation’s three major credit reporting agencies, Equifax, exposed 143 million American’s sensitive and personal information in a data breach. The breach lasted from mid-May through July. The hackers accessed people’s names, Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses and, in some instances, driver’s license numbers. They also stole credit card numbers for about 209,000 people and dispute documents with personal identifying information for about 182,000 people. And they grabbed personal information of people in the UK and Canada too.

Social Security numbers were first handed out in 1936 as a way to keep track of earnings history. They were not meant to be a source of identification. It used to say that right on the Social Security cards. To date, more than 450,000,000 nine-digit combinations have been issued; there are about 1 billion combinations, so no need as of yet for any to be recycled. But security breaches are becoming more and more popular providing hackers with the ability to leave you swimming in authorized purchases, your identity and personal information stolen.

There are some important ways that you can protect yourself from these kinds of data breaches.

  • Consider placing a credit freeze on your files if you think you’ve been a victim.
  • Monitor your existing credit card and bank accounts closely.
  • Consider placing fraud alerts on your files.
  • File your taxes early, before a scammer can.
  • Recycle your electronic devices properly with a certified business.

AccuShred firmly believes that total physical destruction is the only fail-safe method of destroying data stored on hard drives, disks and other storage devices. That is why we shred and recycle each and every hard drive that we receive. We NEVER sell intact hard drives – period. Protect yourself from data breaches by taking the extra steps to destroying your data.

Posted in Corporate Identity Theft, Cyber Security, Document Destruction, Identity Theft, News
SEP 27

India’s Informal Market

India’s informal electronic market is influenced by hundreds of thousands of people who collect unregistered recycled goods. Over 90 percent of India’s e-scrap enters the informal sector for processing, according to a national assessment and follow-up studies by nonprofit groups and academic institutions. In fact, the Seelampur slum, many call home, has become one of India’s most concentrated centers of electronics dismantling and recycling, with an estimated 25,000 informal workers. Similar processing clusters exist throughout India, the world’s second-most-populous country with a population of 1.32 billion.

The security issue behind these businesses collecting unregistered electronics for scrap is that the lower-value materials often get dump or end up in crude processing sites that put individuals at risk for hackers. The environmental risks for these disposed pieces also create an issue.

Increased international media scrutiny of these realities has helped push Indian policymakers and other stakeholders to try to formalize the sector. In 2016, an extended producer responsibility system went into effect, mandating electronics producers to help manage a nationwide e-scrap system. That lack of clear guidance for these new processes exists – no one has figured out how to integrate the Indian informal side in a successful manner.

Read more about how India is looking for ways to ensure used electronics are safely and cost-effectively managed, here.

Posted in Cyber Security, E-Waste, Recycling
SEP 7

Training Staff in HIPAA Regulations

Most breaches of protected health information (PHI) are related to human error, underscoring the need for medical practices to develop and maintain rigorous training programs for employees so they comply with HIPAA regulations.

However when it comes to training, these organizations are not doing enough to education and train their personnel. A $20 training video is not enough to keep individuals up to speed on the issues surrounding HIPAA regulations.

Here are few ways that you can advance your training programs to ensure security breaches do not happen;

  1. Make it user friendly – By making the procedure of data security user friendly, it is less likely that short attention spans or lengthily steps will cause the user is have a mishap. At other practices, individuals responsible for HIPAA training score tests and require staff to get a certain grade to “pass.” Another strategy is to provide personnel the answers to questions they miss before they move to the next question for positive reinforcement.
  2. Instructor lead courses – At staff meetings, someone can pick a HIPAA topic and discuss how to prevent breaches. Practices can put monthly reminders on a bulletin board. If time allows and it is affordable, organizations can sponsor an instructor-led course in which people can ask questions and interact. These classes can be held in person or via video conferencing.

Partner with AccuShred for the safe destruction of your data. AccuShred helps medical facilities maintain their HIPAA compliance by providing secure containers for the storage of PHI and then destroying that personal health information.

Learn more about our variety of secure container options: https://accushred.net/secure-containers.php

Posted in Uncategorized
SEP 5

Correctly Destroy Your Digital Property

When it comes to information that is stored on a disk or hard drive, information will not be safe just by breaking it in half or taking a hammer to it. The National Institute of Ecology and Climate Change (INECC) recently completed a study that concluded that, in Mexico, only 10% of obsolete electronics discarded in that nation are handled and recycled properly. In addition, they estimate that 50% of the electronic scrap is sent to landfills, with much of that collected by scavengers.

When digital information is not destroyed properly it is likely to end up in the hands of scavengers who are able to extract information or process in unsafe and environmentally unsound ways. The article’s author writes, “about 500,000 tons of obsolete electronics each year are collected by an informal sector that destroys them, releasing toxics, without there being authority that prevents it.”

AccuShred firmly believes that total physical destruction is the only fail-safe method of destroying data stored on hard drives, disks and other storage devices. That is why we shred and recycle each and every hard drive that we receive. We NEVER sell intact hard drives – period. We are NAID Certified for electronic media destruction, microfilm destruction as well as HIPAA compliant X-ray destruction/recycling.

Call us today to talk with a service representative and get a customized cost-effective program developed for your business.

Posted in Corporate Identity Theft, Cyber Security, E-Waste, Identity Theft, Recycling, Uncategorized
JUL 24

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.

Americans have been recycling paper for more than 300 years. The average office worker in the U.S. uses 10,000 sheets of copy paper each year. That’s 4 million tons of copy paper used annually. Office workers in the U.S. generate approximately 2 pounds of paper and paperboard products every day.

There are many ways to reduce your paper waste within your office. Easy solutions like changing your bills to “paperless” and unsubscribing to that junk mail you receive each week, all make a difference.

Reusing paper is another cost effective way of reducing your paper usage. When copying, reduce size to fit two pages of a report, book or periodical on one standard sheet.

When the time comes, chose a recycling provider that can accommodate sensitive information and is certified in document/hard drive destruction. AccuShred, in conjunction with State Paper and Metal (our parent company) recycles 17 million pounds of paper a year. This has saved nearly 150,000 trees annually! Sustainability is important to making sure that we have, and will continue to have, the water, materials, and resources to protect human health and our environment.

By the nature of what we do, AccuShred is committed to promoting sustainability in the workplace. Because we recycle 100 percent of the material we shred, AccuShred helps your company achieve its sustainability goals.

Additional sources for reduce and reusing and be found here.

 

Posted in Recycling
JUL 21

Corporate Recycling Programs

For some companies packaging is the largest part of their environmental footprint.

“There’s a difference between things being recyclable and actually being recycled,” says Gerry Fishbeck, Vice President of United Resource Recovery Corporation (URRC), one of the largest recyclers in the country.”

The U.S. recycling system has many challenges but corporate recycling programs are evolving. The Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is a legislation that sets requirements for companies to collect and recycle a certain percentage of the packaging waste they generate, but leave how they go about doing it up to the companies themselves.

Companies are taking recycling into their own hands and establishing “go green” efforts that not only reduce their carbon footprint but also save them money. One of the most important steps to this process is arranging the collection and disposal of your waste.

AccuShred’s parent company, State Paper and Metal Company, has been providing commercial, industrial, governmental and educational recycling programs for nearly 80 years. In addition to document destruction services, we can provide your company with a Corporate Recycling Program. Whether your company has five employees or 50,000, we can provide you with a tailored recycling program.

You can learn more about our corporate recycling programs here.

Posted in Uncategorized
Banking/Financial | Health Care | Pharmacy | Real Estate | Industrial | Engineering | Insurance | Legal | Government | Accounting | Consulting | Mortgage/Property

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