Shredder. Security levels and shredder types

Shredder is for paper documents and other information carriers destroying. Due to this device, information stored on paper, plastic cards and discs is destroyed by means of mechanic shredding, it guarantees security of the enterprise operation. The name “shredder” originates from the verb “to shred”.

Shredder is device needed at every enterprise, where employees deal with documents or other information carriers. Paper documents, photos, floppy discs, plastic cards, containing confidential information, commercial secret, can be potential source of problems and troubles in the strange hands. Organization, where security leak happened, can lose profit, and government can lose international confidence.

Depending on confidential degree of destroying documents, necessary security degree of the shredder can be selected. The security degree depends on the cut paper size. The smaller parts, the harder information renewal. European standard DIN 32757 (especially developed secrecy level standard) there are 6 safety levels. Though, usually there are 5 security levels without mentioning the last one.

The first level: it is used for general documents utilization, for example unclassified correspondence. The first level shredders cut paper sheets into 6-12 mm strips.

The second level: These level shredders are used for internal correspondence utilization. Depending on the model, they can be strip-cut or cross-cut shredders. They shred paper into 6 mm strips.

The third level: it is used for confidential documents utilization. Depending on the model, sheet of paper is cut into small rectangular 4x80 mm fragments, or parallel-cut can be used (2 mm strips).


The fourth level: this level shredders are for secret and strictly confidential documents utilization. Cross-cut is used in such kind of shredders (2x15 mm parts).

The fifth level: for top-secret document elimination. Destroyed elements are shredded into 0,8x13 mm parts.

The sixth level: this type shredders eliminate strictly secret documents of particular importance. After shredding the information carriers are similar to ashes after burning. 0,8x4 mm fragments.


Depending on the amount of eliminating documents and capacity, shredders can be divided into following groups:

Personal shredders – shredders with small eliminating capacity. It is recommended to be used by one person on the workplace or in the company with small personnel. Personal shredders occupy little room: this shredder size is not more than garbage can. The security level is usually low. Elimination capacity is about 10 sheets at a time. Functions are simple. Load: 50-300 sheets per day.

Office shredders are used for collective usage. Capacity, speed and security levels are selected depending on the amount of users and documents utilization intensity. Usually the third level security shredders are used in copying rooms of large organizations. Some models can shred not only paper documents, but also plastic cards, compact discs and other information carriers.

Industrial or archiving shredders are used for centralized elimination of documents in large amounts, this device is very large and occupies a lot of place in the enterprise building. But this disadvantage is compensated with maximal documents utilization speed, 30 sheets of paper can be eliminated at a time. Utilization capacity is around 500-35000 sheets per day. Also they are the fourth and more security level shredders.

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