July 16, 2018

5 ways to be secure and environmentally friendly in the workplace

Growing up, we were often told that we have a part to play in caring for the environment. Protecting the environment does not have to be practiced only at home. In fact, there are many ways we can be environmentally friendly at work too. Here are some sustainable practices that you and your organisation can adopt without compromising your confidential data.

Avoid Unnecessary Printing

Almost 15% of waste generated[1] in Singapore comes from paper. Many organisations fail to realise that many documents like PowerPoint presentations do not need to be printed. Some documents do need to be kept in hardcopy such as payroll statements however, whenever possible, employees should be encouraged to access documents online. If printing is required, employees should utilise both sides of the paper as this can help to save up to 50% of paper costs.

Declutter Your Work Space

Did you know that secure document management can be good for the environment? Stacks of paper documents that may contain sensitive information are often left unsecured in the office. This creates clutter and increases the risk of a security breach. To avoid such situations, organisations can implement these simple steps:

  • Clean Desk Policy – Besides looking tidy and professional, a clean desk also prevents information from lying around unguarded and deters thieves from stealing information for illegal activities. It also encourages staff to prevent excessive printing.
  • Shred-it All Policy – When in doubt, shred it all. Destroying physical copies containing confidential data will help to reduce the risk of security breaches. Besides being secure, Shred-it also protects the environment by recycling all shredded documents.
  • Document destruction expert – Engaging an expert enables organisations to practice secure disposal methods through secure shredding. This way, the organisation reduces the risk of a data breach from happening.

Practicing 3Rs In The Pantry

The basic 3R rules should be practiced in the office pantry. Encourage employees who bring their own lunch stored in reusable containers and bring their own utensils and reusable mugs. This will mean ensuring there is a fridge and a place to wash dishes. Having recycling bins in the pantry can encourage employees to recycle waste such as cans and glass bottles. However, do be careful that the recycling bin isn’t used to dispose of documents since they might contain sensitive information.

Use Eco-Friendly Products

Products that are most commonly used by organisations include copy paper, ink cartridges and cleaning products. Such products often take a long time to decompose and end up harming the environment. Organisations should take a proactive approach by purchasing 100% recyclable copy paper for printing, biodegradable cleaning products and recyclable ink cartridges.

Switch to Eco-Friendly Lighting

Lighting in the office plays an important role as it impacts employee morale and productivity. Switching from high energy bulbs to energy-saving LEDs not only is friendly to the environment, but it also curbs the electricity bill.

Start Protecting Your Business

An organisation that integrates personal data protection into its business processes can help reduce the risk of a data breach while helping to save the environment. Learn how Shred-it can protect your documents and hard-drives by contacting us.


[1] Nea.gov.sg. (2018). Waste Statistics and Overall Recycling. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.nea.gov.sg/energy-waste/waste-management/waste-statistics-and-overall-recycling [Accessed 9 May 2018]