From the outside, strip-cut and cross-cut paper shredders don’t look very distinct. However, their distinctions lie in their cut type and design. Keep reading to discover the major differences between cross-cut shredders and strip-cut shredders to decide which model is best for your needs.
The Biggest Difference: Shred Type
The most obvious difference between strip-cut and micro-cut shredders is the type of paper particle they produce. Strip-cut machines vertically slice documents. They create “strips” of paper, which is where they get their name. On the other hand, cross-cut machines provide extra cuts through the standard particle strip. This creates smaller pieces, a characteristic that has numerous benefits, such as increased bin capacity and security. While these physical differences are some of the most notable between the two shredders, their unique shred types lead to other distinguishing features.
Security Level Differences
Because cross-cut shredders create smaller paper particles, they promote increased information security. There are seven security levels for shredding—P-7 is the most secure, and P-1 is the least secure. Strip-cut shredders usually make up levels P-1 or P-2, while cross-cut machines offer more security in the P-3 and P-4 categories. Although using a strip-cut machine is still much safer than disposing of documents without shredding them, it doesn’t provide the same level of security as a cross-cut machine.
The difference in security standards leads to unique applications for each shredder model. Strip-cut shredders often provide enough security for everyday documents but not for highly classified information. When shredding confidential documents, such as banking information or business files, many consumers choose a cross-cut model. Educational, medical, and governmental facilities must comply with a certain level of information security, which means they have specific shredding requirements. Some of these facilities may use cross-cut shredders, while others may use even higher-security models, such as micro-cut machines.
When you’re deciding on shredder models for your home office or business, remember these differences between strip-cut and cross-cut shredders. Cross-cut models provide extra information security and increased bin capacity. If this is a major factor in your machine choice, be sure to browse our selection of high-capacity paper shredders here at Capital Shredder. They have designs that keep space and security in mind.