Every business and household in the land will be familiar with the problem of document storage. No matter your size, success or age, you will need to manage and store important information for future reference. It’s part of everyday life. This has been the case for centuries and continues to this day, in spite of the digital age in which we now live.
The paperwork that builds up in your offices and homes can become not only an eyesore but, if managed improperly, a threat to personal and professional security. Storing documents in a simple and secure way will improve the efficiency of your home and business, as well as ensure that all of your data is protected. The only question that remains is – ‘what is the best way to do it?’ In this article, we will explore the best options available for securely storing your documents.
Storing at home
Whilst you might be filing aficionados at work, many people are less than diligent at home with their personal paperwork. Stuffing your sensitive documents into a cupboard or under the stairs might be the easiest solution but it puts your sensitive material at risk. Confidential material such as your bank account details, tax returns and credit card information can be just as attractive to a burglar as your jewellery and electronics.
One of the most common ways to store sensitive documents at home is with a personal safe. These should ideally be fire and waterproof to protect the files from damage and kept in a hard-to-find place in your house. Home safes can often be expensive and quality can vary significantly. The average home safe costs over £500 and needs to be secured to walls or floors to be fully effective, which can be a nuisance.
Storing at work
If you walk into the office of an average business the chances are that most of their sensitive documents are either stacked in a storeroom or dumped in a filing cabinet and forgotten about. Paperwork stored in this fashion quickly builds up and is often exposed to prying eyes. When someone wants to see a particular document, a rummage-fest ensues in which it is often never found. Their premises may be locked at night but this is far from the most efficient or secure system to rely upon.
Safe Deposit Box
Many banks and credit unions still offer a safe deposit box service, although it is becoming less common with the decline of high-street banking. Documents stored in this way are safeguarded in industrial vaults which is, although highly secure, not the most practical way to store confidential documents. Most people need somewhat regular access to certain documents such as birth certificates and tax returns, which cannot be quickly accessed when stored at a bank.
Professional storage companies maintain facilities that are specifically designed to securely store belongings, including paperwork. Long or short term, these companies can store sensitive documents in industrial storage units. For example, at Flexible Storage our storage units are fire and water proof, secured by automated gates and under constant CCTV surveillance. Even under all this security, we provide customers with easy access to their stored documents as well as scanning services to swiftly retrieve, scan and send over any document they might need.
So which is most secure?
The first step in securely storing important documents is to decide what to store. Sort through all of your paperwork and decide what needs to be stored and what needs to be destroyed – responsibly. Professionally shredding all confidential documents that are out of date or no longer needed is the most safe, efficient and eco-friendly way to dispose of sensitive material. It frees up space in your homes and offices, and certificates of destruction give you peace of mind.
The decision ultimately comes down to your situation and requirements. Will you need regular access to your documents? Do you think that your home or office is secure enough to store them? What level of security will give you the most peace of mind? You will need to consider these questions before making your decision. However, we at Flexible Storage believe that a professional document storage service such as ours does not only offer you the highest level of security but the highest level of convenience too.
Get in touch with one of our professional storage consultants to learn more about our document management service and receive a tailored quote.