Who’s reading your trash? Compliance with FACTA is more than a technicality

In today’s data-driven world, it’s hard to imagine any business having a shortage of sensitive client information. Whether dealing with patient records at a doctor’s office, tax files at an accounting firm, or a stack of social security numbers locked up in a filing cabinet in a government building, there’s no denying that there is a lot of information out there that needs to be secured.

This is where laws like FACTA — and specifically its recent disposal rule — come into play. Meant to keep consumer information safe, FACTA requires companies that utilize sensitive information to dispose of that information properly, providing a detailed set of instructions on how to do so. When it comes to laws like this one, though, avoiding stiff federal penalties is only part of the reason that your company should make sure to maintain compliance.

Here are a few reasons why:

You Never Know Who Might Be Looking

The National Association for Information Destruction recently discovered four instances in the news of regular people stumbling upon sensitive information in the trash. Things like this happen every day: even the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is now training lawyers to dumpster dive and look out for code violations. The fact is, you never know who might be looking at your data, so even just one mistake in getting rid of your data and documents could lead to trouble later on.

Compliance Prevents Competitors From Accessing Your Data

As Ben Rothke of CSO Online notes, “The reality is that many of your competitors would love to get their hands on documents that you are throwing out.” Improper data destruction could easily lead to a loss of business if a competitor gets access to your trade secrets or other customer data.

Proper Data Destruction Now Means Less Work Later On

Let’s face it: it’s impossible to know exactly what types of data will be used as technology continues to evolve. What is possible is making sure to comply with current laws now. As data gets more complicated, so too will its destruction, so getting ahead of the game with data and document destruction now means less difficulty doing the same thing down the road.

Compliance with laws like FACTA is in no way a guarantee of success, but it is certainly a good place to start. By ensuring that your business establishes and maintains compliance with federal law, chances are increased of your business reaping the benefits on a broad scale.

If all of this seems a bit daunting, don’t worry — companies like DataShield are here to help. We know that compliance with these laws can be difficult and want to make sure to make your business’ transition to compliance as painless as possible. We will work with you every step of the way to ensure not only that you remain compliant, but also that you understand the reasons for doing so.

For more information on how DataShield can help move your business to compliance with federal law surrounding data destruction, contact us here.

Start protecting your documents and data now.