One of the most recent developments when it comes to improving your organization's operational efficiency is to go digital. By taking this step, you have given each member of your team the capability to handle tasks much more quickly and with fewer errors. Going digital has allowed you to mostly ignore your paper documents – which is a good thing, since paper documents are expensive and difficult to manage. However, even if you rarely – or never – use them, protecting paper documents still needs to be a priority for your organization. Here is why:
Theft and sabotage are always a concern
No matter what you do, there will always be people who will have malicious thoughts. It does not matter whether a person's malice is arbitrary, driven by dislike or spurred by greed. All that matters is that it can lead to a desire to destroy or steal your company's valuable data. To this end, the easiest target is your paper documents, which can be accessed by anyone with a set of basic tools and enough nerve to make an attempt.
To prevent this type of infiltration, you should convert your paper documents to digital files, and when necessary, destroy the paper copies. Then, they should be protected and encrypted with digital security technology.
People lose things
Paper documents get lost, mixed up and misfiled all of the time. If there is an immediate need for a document that has been lost, this poses a problem. It is an even bigger issue when a lost or misplaced document is sensitive and it has been accidentally placed in an unsecured location.
You can completely eliminate this type of security threat with the power of digital technology. After converting a document to a digital file, you must invest in a streamlined set of document management software. This will ensure that a document never gets lost by making accessing it as easy as a Google search.
Sometimes flooding, fires, etc. simply cannot be avoided. These types of disasters can destroy anything, but of all of the assets that your organization possesses, paper has the fewest defences against sudden disasters – fire, water and physical trauma will quickly ruin paper documents.
Protecting paper documents from sudden disasters is easier if they aren't paper at all. This is where having digital copies will come in handy.
Original copies can fail
Paper is very susceptible to wear and tear. Fingerprints, coffee stains and even the air we breathe all contribute the degradation and ultimate destruction of a paper document. This means that you could unexpectedly find yourself unable to decipher the content printed on an original document.
Make sure that this isn't a problem by backing up your paper documents as digital files and only sharing the digital copies.
Paper documents aren't easy to intentionally destroy
Although paper documents are very susceptible to accidental destruction, intentionally destroying them isn't so simple. Unlike a digital file, a paper document cannot simply be deleted. If you have secured data that needs to be destroyed, then you must go through the process of shredding every last sheet. However, although it is a difficult process, it is possible to restore shredded documents; if someone were interested enough in what was contained within your recently shredded documents, then they could do so.
The most complete way to destroy paper documents is via an incinerator.
Are you completely protecting your paper documents?
Successfully protecting paper documents requires you do to more than place them in a lock box. You must take additional steps to secure them against theft, destruction and loss.