There are six types of security levels for paper shredders. They are numbered one through seven, and the higher numbers provide the most security. Here are the security levels for paper shredders that you need to know to protect your confidential content.
Levels P-1 and P-2
Levels P-1 and P-2 provide the lowest level of security, so they are not the best for classified information. The P-1 cuts paper strips that are around one-half of an inch, and the P-2 cuts paper strips that are around one-fourth of an inch. While these shredders are very fast, they produce paper strips that are still legible and easy to piece back together.
Levels P-3 and P-4
Levels P-3 and P-4 are a step up from levels P-1 and P-2 because they cut the paper into smaller strips and pieces. The P-3 still cuts into strips, but they are less than 2 mm wide. Many people like the P-3 because it cuts fast and still provides adequate security. If you want to cut the paper into pieces instead of strips, then you need a P-4 level machine. The P-4s are cross-cut machines that slice paper into pieces instead of strips. The P-4 is the perfect combination of speed and security, as it slices the paper into pieces that are around 160 mm2 with a width of less than 6 mm.
Levels P-5 and P-6
The P-5 is just like the P-4, except it cuts the paper into pieces that are approximately 30 mm2 with a width of less than 2 mm. The P-6 machine cuts the paper into pieces that are around 10 mm2 with a width of 1 mm. While the P-5 and P-6 are great machines, they can be slow and do not shred small enough to meet NSA guidelines for classified information. To shred classified information, you need a P-7.
Level P-7 machines are the best shredders for classified content. Governments choose to purchase these NSA-approved shredders because it is almost impossible to recover any documents after the shredding process. Level P-7 shredders cut the paper into pieces that are approximately 5 mm2 with a width of around 1 mm.
These are the security levels for paper shredders that you should know. Remember that the higher levels provide greater security, but they take more time to shred than the lower levels. For quality shredders that protect your confidential information, remember to visit our online store here at Capital Shredder Corp.