Shredding Security Levels – Which one is right for me?

May 24, 2016 at 9:13 am by SEM

In the US market, there are guidelines and laws that address end-of-life media disposal. However, many of them do not provide specific destruction particle sizes to insure the most effective solution. Most simply indicate that media should be destroyed with the use of a shredder or other destruction solution.The exception is the National Security Agency (NSA) that mandates certain particle sizes for top secret/classified data that resides on all forms of media. For a list of media destructions solutions evaluated and listed by the NSA, click here.

In industries like health care, finance, banking, education, consumer, etc., the importance of the proper disposal of end-of life media is also well defined but the particle size specifics are very open-ended. However, there are some well defined guidelines established in Europe. These are known as DIN standards and they provide shred size guidelines for information that resides on a wide range of media.

What is the European DIN Standard 66399?

DIN 66399 is the European Security Standard for the shredding or destruction of all types of data media.

Who is it for?

Sets out new responsibilities regarding the protective security required for commercial organizations, government departments, and individuals to help make an informed choice of the correct equipment to guarantee all levels of secure destruction.

Three Protection

Class 1: Is for the normal protection required for internal data where disclosure would have a negative impact on a company or a risk of identity theft of an individual.

Class 2: Is for the higher protection for confidential data where disclosure would have a considerably negative effect or could breach legal obligations of a company, or offer a risk of adverse social or financial standing of an individual.

Class 3: Is for very high protection for confidential and top secret data which if disclosed could have terminal consequences for a company or government entity, and have a health and safety or personal freedom risk to individuals.

Six Media Categories

The DIN Association also defines six media format categories on where information may reside. They are as follows:

o PPaper based products

o FFilm based products including micro-film, microfiche, and slides etc.

o OOptical media including CD’s, DVD’s and Blu-ray disks etc.

o TMagnetic data media like floppy discs, ID cards, magnetic tapes and cassettes etc.

o HHard drives from computers, laptops, and external devices

o EElectronic data media like memory sticks, cards, solid state
drives, mobile phones

Seven Specific Security Levels (define the particle sizes)


P = Paper media requirements

Maximum Shred Size for Other Media

How does SEM meet these requirements?

As a supplier of information destruction systems for the
past 50 years, SEM is a leader in providing solutions to meet all of the
destruction needs outlined in the DIN guidelines. From machines that can shredpaper to optical disks to hard drives to data tapes to solid state devices,
SEM has the answer.

For information on any of these solutions, visit us at www.semshred.comor call us at 800-225-9293.

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