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.
With an extensive range of shredders for home, large office and pretty much everything in between, Rexel shredders are an extremely popular choice when it comes to the safe shredding of documents and other materials.
As a long established brand, Rexel (owned by Acco Brands) have a reputation for producing high quality machines, many of which have received highly favourable reviews. Some of their best known shredders include: the Style and Style+ (affordable cross-cut shredders suitable for shredding highly confidential documents); the Prostyle and Prostyle+ range (highly rated shredders, with the Rexel Prostyle+ 12 Sheet Cross-Cut Shredder winning 1st place in the Gadget Show’s test of 20 leading home shredders); and the Auto+ range, winner of the 2013 European Office Products Awards (Auto+ shredders are innovative personal and office shredders which allow you to just stack and leave your paper for the shredder to automatically shred).
Rexel have developed several technologies to support easier shredding, so look out for the following handy features when next buying a Rexel shredder: Auto Feed (automatic shredding with the Auto+ range of shredders); Anti-Jam/Jam Free (the shredder uses a light indication system to alert you if you are trying to feed in too much paper); Auto Oiling (the shredder automatically oils itself at regular intervals - you simply replace the oil when prompted); overheat protection (the shredder is disabled if it is in danger of overheating); and power save (the shredder powers down after a period of non-use to save power).
A range of shredder accessories are also available to help keep your Rexel shredder working optimally - these include waste sacks, lubricant and their handy shredder oil sheets (rather than have to squeeze oil onto the blades you just run these oiled sheets through the shredder).