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April 30, 2020

Storing Your Documents Safely In Isolation

Self isolation continues and so does working from home. Part of working from home is the creation of business documents on top of the usual personal home documents you normally have. While many are seeking to set up document shredding at their homes, it may not be an option for all. That could be due to finances or you simply have a small quantity of documents built up to begin with. You still need to meet compliance requirements with your documents, but if you are in a position where you need to wait for a time, it is important to do so properly.

documents in a filing cabinet

Proper Document Storage

If you’re going to be storing your documents, then you need to be doing it properly. If doing this at home is new to you, then you may have limited options. With that said, you should have something that is usable, and something is better then nothing after all. We’ll look at a few of the most common options you probably have in your house right now.

Lockable Desk Drawer

If you’re working at home and reading this on the computer, chances are you have a computer desk, and your desk might just have some drawers in it. Usually a desk that is meant for office work has one or more drawers that are lockable. While not necessarily the most sturdy or complicated of locks, they offer a good option to protect some sensitive material. Make sure you don’t leave the key laying around in an obvious spot, the idea here is to keep them locked away.

File Cabinet

If you have a home office setup you may have a file cabinet at your disposal, even in this day and age there are still file cabinets around. Like the desk drawer, the locks on these are not always the best, but they are a secure option when you aren’t spoiled for choice. If the option is open to you, putting the cabinet into a closet so it isn’t immediately in sight can be a good choice. With all of these, keep in mind the philosophy of “out of sight, out of mind”.

A Good Safe

Probably the best option in home improvised document storage, a good safe is going to be the hardest option for someone to crack. You should probably consider a combination lock over a key, as those can be picked, but use what you’ve got. Safes especially benefit from being kept out of sight, and can be easier to accomodate for that then a full on file cabinet. Space may be an issue if you have only a small safe and a large amount of documents to store, choose the most sensitive for the safe and keep the rest in another secure spot.

Remembering To Shred Later

Keep everything organized as well as you can, and don’t forget that there is a limit on retention. The time will come when you must get shredding in order to be compliant with privacy regulations. Given the current situation with COVID-19, that may seem like a hard thing to achieve. Fortunately onsite services are still able to help you, with some updates to consider social distancing of course.

It’s best not to take a chance with sensitive information, especially during a time like this. Keep records as secure as you can.

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