Old checks can contain sensitive information such as your name and address, the name of your bank, your bank account and routing numbers, and signatures. They also provide a snapshot of your financial history by showing the dollar amount spent or received and the name of the other party in the transaction. When disposing of old checks, it is important to make sure these materials are destroyed securely so that they could not be recovered. If a bad actor received this type of information, you would be at serious risk of having your identity stolen or of having someone else gain access to your bank accounts.
Shredding Old Checks
Shredding is the unquestioned best method to securely get rid of old checks. It is a proven cost-effective, timely, and convenient process to be sure that your sensitive information will not be stolen after disposal. Shredding a check with a professional shredding service provider offers added protection as the process breaks up the materials into tiny, unrecoverable pieces that cannot be put back together.
How To Shred Old Checks
You can speak with a professional at Guard Docs to set up your project to shred your old checks. We offer pick-ups for projects of all sizes, for residents and for business customers. Guard Docs will come to your location and offer an on-site or off-site solution, depending on your needs. For on-site services, a Guard Docs driver will collect the checks from you and securely transport them out to the mobile shredding in a locked container. The bin is then tipped into the truck’s mobile shredding machine so that you can witness the process when the materials are instantly shredded at your location. For off-site services, a Guard Docs driver will collect the materials from you and securely transport the checks directly to our shredding plant facility. The materials are kept inside a locked container and at the secure facility and then promptly shredded inside the plant.
Shredding vs. Burning
Shredding is the preferred method of destruction over burning for checks and for all documents. Shredding is better for the environment and it allows the shredded materials to be recycled into new paper products. Burning checks and other documents causes pollution and creates harmful residue. Shredding is also more secure, because it ensures that the entire document is 100% destroyed. Burning, on the other hand, is less secure because there can be times when the fire extinguishes before the burning process is complete, like a flame that goes out before burning all the way through a log.
Storing old and unused checks with a professional document storage company is the best way to protect the documents before you need to destroy them. A professional document storage company will safeguard your materials in a secure facility while keeping them in a precise location so that you know where they are at all times and can access them if needed. A professional storage company can also inventory your records by box number, record number, etc., and match it to a precise shelf location in a database. Using a professional storage company like Guard Docs prevents your checks and other documents from getting stolen or lost. There is no safer way to manage your records.
Why Get Rid Of Old Checks/Checkbooks?
One of the biggest reasons to shred old checks is to prevent check fraud. Check fraud is commonly committed when someone steals an old check, changes the payee names and amounts on the check, and then fraudulently deposits them. Check fraud is a dangerous and common practice. The best way to prevent this from happening is to shred your old checks so that they cannot be recovered and used against you.
Identity theft is a serious consequence of check theft. If someone gains access to the information displayed on your check, they have access to your name, bank account and routing numbers, and more. This information can be used in part to commit identity theft and to steal money from your bank account.