Paper shredder security (or DIN) levels start at P-1 (basic shredding) and increase to P-7 (shredding of top secret documents).
The higher the level, the smaller the shredded particle size - so the harder it is for your information to be pieced back together.
The 'P' prefix relates to paper as this is the most commonly shredded material.
To simplify this, we’ve created 4 categories from low to very high:
Low - P-1 and P-2 shredders for basic and everyday shredding (use these for the shredding of less sensitive, non-confidential documents)
Medium - P-3 shredders for confidential shredding (use these for things like bank statements)
High - P-4 and P-5 shredders for highly confidential and secret shredding (again, these can be used to shred things like bank statements. Also, businesses who have high security requirements may use these higher security shredders.)
Very High - P-6 and P-7 shredders for highly secret and top secret shredding (these are only really used by businesses with extremely high security requirements, e.g. government departments)
Strip-cut shredders shred material into long, narrow strips. They provide lower security (P-1 and P-2 only) and can be used for basic
and everyday shredding, rather than the shredding of confidential documents
Cross-cut shredders (also called confetti-cut) shred material into short, narrow pieces (with a P-3 to P-6 security level rating). They are considered more secure
than strip-cut shredders as they shred material into smaller pieces, which are much harder to put back together.
Micro-cut shredders are a type of cross-cut shredder but they shred into even smaller particles than standard cross-cuts, therefore providing the very
highest level of security. Micro-cut shredders would normally be found in business environments with high security requirements, although you can get some more affordable models for home use.
Shredder bin capacity can range from around 5 litres to over 200 litres.
The number of shredded sheets a bin will hold is dependent on type of cut (e.g. strip-cut, cross-cut or micro-cut) and also the exact size of shredded particles.
However, as a very rough guide a 5 litre strip-cut shredder would hold around 35 shredded sheets before you need to empty it - and a 200 litre cross-cut would hold up to around 2000 sheets.
It’s also worth remembering that the bigger the bin capacity is, the larger the shredder will be too.
If you want to shred your sensitive and confidential data and help protect yourself from ID fraud, then take a look at our range of paper shredders to suit all requirements, from cheaper entry level machines to very high-spec models capable of shredding hundreds of sheets at a time.If you have a basic shredding need that doesn't need to be high security, you may want to consider a strip-cut shredder which will shred your documents into long strips and make it harder for someone to piece them back together. If you only have one or two items to shred at a time, you could even buy a manual shredder which doesn't require mains electric power - these are great for things like receipts and can be kept handy so that you can shred frequently (but in low volume) in order to keep on top of your paper shredding! If you are looking for a higher level of security than a strip-cut machine, a cross-cut shredder will shred your documents into even smaller pieces, making it much harder for any potential fraudsters to reconstruct your shredded material. For a higher level of security still, you could opt for a micro-cut shredder - as the name suggests, these machines shred your papers into very tiny particles and therefore offer some of the best protection against identity theft - whether that be to protect you and your family's sensitive information, or if you are running a business to protect your valuable customer and internal company data.
In order to find the best paper shredder for your particular needs, you can use our handy filters to narrow down your search. You can filter by the cutter types mentioned above as well as security level (from basic to very high security). You can also decide what material you want to be able to shred including credit cards and CDs, as well as staples and paper clips. Sheet capacity may be another important consideration for you, helping you to identify the machine that shreds the right number of sheets of paper for your requirements.We also enable you to sort the order of your selection, by 'most popular' paper shredders, and price 'low to high' or 'high to low'. Once you have narrowed down the choices, our 'Compare' functionality lets you select up to three models for comparison. You will then be able to view the price of the shredders from a number of well known online and high-street retailers, helping you to get a good deal too!Whilst most of the shredders on this site are A4 shredders, we have a number of A3 paper shredders as well. And if you are still trying to find the perfect shredding machine for your home or business, consider using our Shredder Finder which guides you through the process of finding a suitable model in just a few short questions.We hope that our filters and handy tools will assist you in buying the right paper shredder for your needs, helping to keep your home or business safe and secure from identity fraud.