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Los Angeles Document Shredding: Shredding Information

by rubybadcoe

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Executive Order 13526, signed by President Obama in 2009, laid out the specifics on how files and documents should be classified. Under Section 1.2, there are three levels of classification: confidential, secret, and top secret—with the third level being the highest form. But only Obama, any official appointed by Obama, and a few delegated officials have the authority to classify.

Why mark some files as confidential or top secret when the human mind has this insatiable desire to know? Some would say there are things in the world you’re better off not knowing. If the situation calls for it, government officials can shred classified documents, primarily for the sake of national security. Even if it means not knowing the real truth behind a story, document shredding in Los Angeles prioritizes lives.

During the Cold War, the U.S. played the secrecy game by keeping confidential information on a tight titanium leash. During the Korean War, an American F-86 Sabre fighter was shot down and the pilot fled the crash site. His allies then commenced their attempt to completely destroy the Sabre (for fear that the Soviets may benefit from it), though they failed to do so.

What does the tale of a downed and compromised American fighter have to do with document shredding in Los Angeles? The answer is simple: security. Instead of mounting an operation to rescue the plane, the Americans felt it was better to destroy it completely, lest the enemy gets a hold of confidential data. If you study the example closely, you’ll find that it shares some similarity with the current security policies on preventing information leaks by any means necessary.

When it comes to protecting national security and fighting a war, information is just about the most important asset of all parties involved. Thus, it’s better to be destroyed than to be taken advantage of. It may seem like a simple task, but document shredding can save lives. If history has taught the U.S. government anything, it’s that some things don’t ever need to see the light of day.

Document shredding is necessary in any sphere, whether it be in the private or government sector. For the story on the captured Sabre, you can read the special feature story at For the latest on document shredding and other security measures, visit



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