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3 Types of Cuts used in Secure Paper Shredders and Their Security Application

Posted by Capital Shredder Corp on 12/17/2019
3 Types of Cuts used in Secure Paper Shredders and Their Security Application

Many organizations have documents with sensitive information. Should the info ever get into the wrong hands, it could be used against them. We are living in times when identity theft is becoming more and more prevalent. Even individuals have to be careful about how they discard their credit card receipts and bank documents.

A commercial paper shredder can provide higher levels of protection against any breach of privacy than typical office shredders. They are designed to handle high volumes, minimize jamming, and notify you of the progress of the process.

High capacity paper shredders make it possible to change configurations to suit their security needs. Military and government agencies require the shredding to be thorough. It must be impossible to put together the shredded paper. The harder it is to recreate the document, the more secure the process.

There are four different ways to cut papers, depending on the desired security level for your application.

Strip Cut

An industrial shredder machine can cut the documents into small strips that are typically 7/32 of an inch. It produces long pieces of paper, sometimes referred to as spaghetti cuts. The strip cut method is not considered to be the most secure.

However, the technique has several advantages:

  • Cost-Effective: This method uses vertical cuts only as opposed to using multiple blades found in other commercial paper shredders. It requires low maintenance and is cheaper to run in the long-term.
  • Reliability: It does not require a lot of maintenance, thanks to fewer moving parts. An industrial shredder that uses the strip cut process will often have additional features. Some features make it possible to prevent paper jamming and will execute automatic shut-offs whenever a problem is detected.
  • Large Capacity: Strip-cut is common for high capacity shredders as it can handle large volumes with minimum technical issues cropping up.
  • Recycle Paper: Papers and card-boards can be chopped into tiny vertical cuts that can provide cushioning when packaging goods. Offices can, therefore, prevent waste by recycling the pieces.


A commercial paper shredder that uses the cross-cut technique typically has two blades. The machine can cut the paper vertically and horizontally. It means the shredded sheets are much harder to put together and read. Although the process is more expensive than the strip-cut, it is considered to be a much more secure paper shredder. Here are the top advantages:

  • Privacy: It is suitable for shredding documents when high levels of security are required. An average size paper can be cut into more than 300 tiny pieces, making it hard for even the most dedicated criminals to put it together. They can be ideal for getting rid of sensitive papers, such as those with social security and credit card numbers.
  • Flexible: Secure paper shredders that use the cross-cut techniques are often built so that they can cut a wide variety of materials. They can shred DVDs, CDs, cardboard or vinyl. Many organizations find this feature to be useful, given that a lot of information is often on electronic media.


If you’re looking for even higher levels of security, consider a level 6 shredder. This type of commercial paper shredder uses the micro-cut to achieve even higher levels of security than the cross-cut. It is common in government agencies where regulations require strict adherence to privacy policies.

With the micro-cut, the paper is cut into thousands of tiny particles. An 8 1/2” by 12” sheet can be chopped into between 3,000 and 5,000 particles, depending on the type of level 6 shredding machine used. The micro-cut can also shred DVDs, CDs, and many other materials where people record sensitive information today.

In Conclusion

A commercial paper shredder can enhance security and privacy by making it impossible to retrieve discarded information. It is important to understand the different types of shredding techniques and the security levels you can get with each machine. Every industrial shredder also has additional features that you ought to consider before making the final decision.

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