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The Next Corporate Data Breach May be in your Trash Can


Survey Reveals a Quarter of U.S. Employees Have Left Sensitive Business Information Vulnerable LAKE ZURICH, Ill. – According to a survey commissioned by Swingline™, the iconic office product brand, there is a false sense of security in the workplace when it comes to information security. Even in the digital world, businesses regularly rely on physical documents. The survey revealed that while employees agree that shredding documents is important to protect confidential information, a surprising number fail to take that simple step.

The study found that a majority (89 percent) of employers use hard, paper copies for record keeping. Two-thirds of respondents said that shredding documents is either the most important (31 percent) or a very important (35 percent) step a company can take to protect its sensitive business information, yet 26 percent admitted to sometimes or often throwing away sensitive business information without first shredding it.  

Despite these admissions and recent highly-publicized information security breaches, confidence is still high when it comes to information security. A vast majority of employees surveyed were not concerned that sensitive business information could be compromised. When asked how much they worry, 23 percent said “some,” 29 percent said “not too much” and 37 percent said they “don’t worry at all.”

“It’s important to remember that threats to business information are not limited to digital data,” said Adam Smith, director of marketing for Swingline. “Shredding documents is a vital step to ensure security, but it’s a time consuming task which is a hurdle to employee compliance. Swingline has introduced new auto feed technology that makes shredding easier, safer and more efficient than ever before.”

Swingline’s Stack-and-ShredTM line of auto-feed shredders allow you to place a stack of papers (up to 750) into the auto feed chamber, close and lock the lid, and walk away for automated, secure, shredding. Swingline’s Stack-and-Shred shredders address the most common pain points associated with shredding:

  1. Time Savings: 98 percent over traditional shredders
  2. Cost Savings: 65 percent or more over shredding services and 90 percent over manual shredders. 
  3. High Security: Once confidential information is placed in the auto feed chamber, a four digit custom PIN code ensures that only the original user can retrieve unshredded documents.

Paper shredding trailed only behind the need to provide secure servers to protect online information (31 percent). The survey found that 24 percent of respondents believe that shredding documents with the company’s sensitive information was the best way to protect information; outpacing regularly changing passwords (14 percent) or deleting outdated information (14 percent).

For more product information on the full line of Stack-and-Shred products, visit

Methodology: Survey conducted by Google Consumer Surveys, November 12-14, 2014. Results are based on 1,000 online responses of a national adult population and filtered for respondents who are currently employed. The margin of error at a 95% confidence level is +/- 3.1 percentage points.


About ACCO® Brands Corporation (NYSE:ACCO)

ACCO Brands Corporation is one of the world's largest suppliers of branded school, office and consumer products and print finishing solutions. Our widely recognized brands include AT-A-GLANCE®, Day-Timer®, Five Star®, GBC®, Hilroy®, Kensington®, Marbig, Mead®, NOBO, Quartet®, Rexel, Swingline®, Tilibra®, Wilson Jones® and many others. We design, market and sell products in more than 100 countries around the world. More information about ACCO Brands can be found at


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