Gloucestershire-based Printwaste Recycling & Shredding used its high-security mobile shredder to securely destroy thousands of scam letters intercepted as part of a high profile campaign to highlight the UK-wide blight of mass marketing fraud.
UK citizens lose around £2.4 billion every year as a result of scam mail, leaving many unfortunate and vulnerable victims out of pocket and understandably distraught. In some cases in the UK, it has ended in suicide.
Sent by professional fraudsters, scam letters are designed to con recipients into investing in bogus schemes, such as fake lotteries or share frauds, or parting with money for goods, services or benefits that are never delivered.
Printwaste, a highly-accredited, confidential data destruction specialist, shredded more than 500 sacks of documentation containing names, addresses and other sensitive information to ensure it could never re-enter the public domain or be duplicated in the wrong hands.
Some 30,000 letters had been collected and stored in a secure unit as part of the ‘Silence of the Scams’ joint initiative between the anti-fraud campaign ‘Think Jessica’, the Metropolitan Police, Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA), Trading Standards and the National Fraud Authority.
Printwaste’s confidential shredding service is used by many UK business sectors, including financial and legal organisations, to securely dispose of highly-sensitive documents and data and prevent it being used for criminal or fraudulent purposes. The services offered by Printwaste help businesses comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 and meet their legal obligations as data processors.
Printwaste Managing Director Don Robins commented: "As these mail scams show, criminals don’t need your bank details to steal your money; your name and where you live are enough. As a company we usually deal with firms who wish to prevent their data ending up in the wrong hands, rather than handling the results if it does.
Don added: "We were glad to have played our part in securely destroying the scam mail. All shredded paper from this operation will be recycled into new paper items, so some good ultimately comes out of it."
James Kelly, Chief Executive of the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) comments: "This campaign highlights the importance of secure data destruction in protecting both individuals and businesses from identity theft and fraud, which costs the UK economy millions of pounds each year. The BSIA strives to promote high standards in the field of information destruction, and all members of its Information Destruction section work to the European Standard for the secure destruction of confidential material, EN 15713."
Printwaste is accredited to ISO 9001:2008 incorporating BS EN 15713:2009, the bespoke standard for information destruction and holds full ISO 14001 certification. It is a principal member of the British Security Industry Association and national service operator The Shredding Alliance, as well as an Environment Agency-registered waste carrier.
As a dual-service company, Printwaste provides a wide range of recycling and secure shredding management solutions to more than 2,000 customers across all business sectors, from Government and Local Authorities, health, financial and legal organisations to commercial and industrial firms of all sizes.