Show all

Delicate Paperwork: The way to Know What to Destroy

Posted on 13. December 2017

When it comes to your sensitive documents, you want it to be bodies Make sure you protect yourself properly. Whether you're worried about your personal files and possible identity theft or business records, you want to make sure you're safe. Part of this could mean destroying certain records, but how do you know what to destroy?

The 7-Year Rule

For your safety, documents with confidential information should be destroyed as soon as they are no longer needed. It is generally believed that all business records have a legal minimum retention period of 7 years. While this is not a blanket statement about all companies and records, there are many documents that should be retained for that period. These include employee contracts, business loan documentation, litigation documents, and general expense reports and documents, including overheads and consulting fees. However, other companies may have specific retention policies for documents and files.

In the medical profession, for example, patient records must be kept until they can be destroyed. For adult patients, records must be kept for at least 10 years after the date of the final entry in the record. In the case of children, records shall be kept for a period of 10 years from the date on which the child reaches the age of 18 or has completed.

Other files that should be kept for a certain amount of time include your tax records. For example, the Canadian Income Tax Act requires that certain tax records be kept for at least 6 years after the end of the year to which they relate. You should keep receipts such as receipts, T4s with your earned income and withholding credits, as well as donations for charitable causes. This only applies to proof of income for Canada.

Other requirements

The rating agency requires companies to keep certain records, such as stock registers, purchase and sale documents, and historical information on shares or liquidation have to.

Records that are not covered by the Income Tax Act include payroll, business license agreements, customer records, memoranda, records, charters, sales and marketing materials, and employee compensation records.

Once documents are no longer needed to be serviced, they should be disposed of as soon as possible. Keeping old documents with confidential information can increase the risk of identity theft, fraud and financial loss. Among the high-priority documents for the destruction include:

  • Statements of financial institutions. These should be destroyed as soon as the required information is available.
  • Obsolete tax information
  • Obsolete medical information
  • Old employee and customer records
  • Documents that are copyrighted Data
  • Contracts and proposals

In order to adequately protect against the loss of sensitive data and the associated risks of identity theft, fraud and potential reputational damage, it is important to establish a policy for the destruction of records. Determine which documents and how long they need to be kept, and clearly indicate the date of destruction. After this date, make sure that the records are destroyed in time. In this way you help protect yourself, your employees and your customers.

Comments are closed.