Security level is an important factor to consider when purchasing your shredder. Paper shredder security is easily identified by the DIN P-Level classification established by the German Institute for Standardisation. The classification is based on the size and cut of the paper particles once they have been shredded. The Classification has three levels of security.
Protection Category 1
This category contains P-1, P-2 and P-3 paper shredders. This security class is suitable for users with a need for a low to normal security level to shred internal data.
Protection Category 2
This category contains P-3, P-4, and P-5 paper shredders. This security class is suitable for users that need to shred sensitive and confidential data.
Protection Category 3
This category contains P-5, P-6, and P-7 paper shredders. This security class is suitable for users that need to shred secret data. If maximum security standards are required P-7 shredders are recommended.
DIN P-Level Classification
Particle Size After Shredding
Max 2,000mm² or strip width max. 12.0mm
Max 800mm² or strip width max 6.0mm
1 + 2
Max 320mm² or strip width max 2.0mm
Max 160mm² and strip width max 6.0mm
2 + 3
Max 30mm² and strip width max 2.0mm
Max 10mm² and strip width max 1.0mm
Max 5mm² and strip width max 1.0mm, or suspension with particle area max 5mm², or reduced to ash with particle area max 5mm²
So, Which Level is Right for Me?
Most general use shredding can be carried out by shredders in protection category 2, at P-5 and below. For shredding sensitive documents we recommend using a shredder at P-5 security level or higher. P-7 is the maximum security level for shredders and would be suitable for shredding highly sensitive and top secret documents with no possibility of document re-production with the current technology.