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    Paper Shredder Buying Guide

    Protect your sensitive information from getting into the wrong hands.....

    Some businesses must use a shredder in order to comply with National Privacy Principles. However, even if your business isn’t one of these, it still makes sense to protect sensitive information relating to your business and/or your clients from being revealed.

    To choose a suitable document shredder you need to identify:

    • The mandated or preferred minimum security level.
    • The size of the paper you want to shred.
    • The number of pages you shred at any one time.
    • Other useful features - including a slot for CDs or credit cards, staple & paper clip handling and safety features including stop sensors.
    • Bin capacity.

    So what are the various Security Levels? Read on for a brief overview.

    Security Level 2

    At this Security Level you’ll use a Strip-Cut Paper Shredder that cuts A4 sized documents into 40 to 50 thin strips. Although this is the lowest security rating it’s a much better option than simply tearing up documents and placing them in a bin. These paper shredders are a cost effective solution for most companies that don’t need a high level of security.

    Security Level 3

    Cross-cut paper shredders are what you’ll use for the higher Security Level 3. Sometimes referred to as confetti-cut, they cut an A4 sheet of paper into 300 to 400 small square pieces, making it extremely difficult for anyone to retrieve sensitive information.

    Security Level 4

    Micro-Cut Shredders have the highest Security Level 4 rating. These paper shredders cut each sheet of paper into approximately 3,000 tiny pieces, making it impossible to retrieve any information. These documents shredders are mostly used by Government Departments and large corporations.

    Here are a few other things to consider.

  • Paper Size

    This is vital, because if you plan to shred paper documents larger than A4, you’ve got to make sure your shredder can cater for this. All you need to do is check the width of the shredder’s opening, often referred to as the “throat”, to ensure you can feed your documents directly into the shredder. If you find it’s not wide enough, the process becomes inefficient and ultimately you’ll be dissatisfied with your choice. 

  • Shred Volume

    There are personal shredders and commercial shredders out there. The personal ones usually take between 2 to 8 sheets in a single pass, are relatively cheap and unreliable. As a result, at Axiaoffice we only offer commercial grade paper shredders. These shredders have higher powered motors and can handle from 9 to 23 sheets of paper in a single pass.

    It’s important to know that no shredder is designed to operate at maximum capacity all the time. However, if you select the right shredder for your application it should last 7 to 10 years, thereby representing much better value than cheaper paper shredders. 

  • Bin Capacity

    Always take note of the Bin Capacity. An overflowing bin actually stops the shredder which can become an irritation to most of us. We offer a range of Shredders that have bin capacities starting at 21 litres and ending at the much larger 120 litre capacity. Also, check which models offer a Bin Full Indicator as this can be very handy.
  • Other Features

    Can your Paper Shredder handle staples and paper clips? An important question. Most commercial grade paper shredders can handle the occasional paper clip or staple, however it’s wise to check the specifications of your Shredder if the documents shredded regularly include either paper clips or staples.

    Also, if you need to shred CDs or credit cards make sure the model you purchase is capable of handling such a task.

    And lastly, check out the safety features of your Paper Shredder. The machines have powerful metal teeth that can be dangerous. Some of these features include sensors that stop the shredder in the event of hands or other objects come in close proximity of the opening.