Survey Reveals Home Office Habits

Fellowes, Inc., the leading shredder manufacturer, launched the Powershred series which features a patent-pending SafeSense technology that automatically disables the shredder when sensing hands or large pets are too close to the opening.


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Working From Home Adds Convenience But Poses Risks

Both Personal Safety and Company Confidentiality Should Be Considered at Home

Itasca, Ill. (January 3, 2007) - Whether it's the shortened commute, a hectic work schedule or the desire to spend extra time with family, more Americans are choosing to work from home or telecommute. Adding to this trend is the popularity of laptop computers and PDAs, which allow Americans to work at any time from any location, especially the home.

In a national survey of nearly 500 full and part -time working adults1, 45 percent of adults said they work from home one or more days per week and 73 percent said they have a home office or work area at home.

As more professionals opt to bring work home and maintain an office area within the home, two risks become prevalent: properly disposing of work -related documents and keeping a working area safe for kids and pets.

More than one -third of respondents said they dispose of work -related documents at home and nearly 60 percent said they own a paper shredder. Shredding is widely known as one of the easiest ways to prevent the theft of confidential information and is a necessity by law for many businesses and their employees. However, as shredders become a necessary household appliance, potential safety risks to families with children and pets need to be considered. In fact, in February 2006 the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a shredder safety alert along with usage tips to help raise shredder safety awareness.

"While a home office or work area adds convenience to Americans' hectic lives, office supplies and office equipment carry safety risks," said Meri -K Appy, president of the Home Safety Council. "From paper shredders and sharp office supplies to fire risks caused by overheating or faulty wiring of electronic office equipment, it's important to evaluate your home office to ensure your work space is safe for the entire family."

In response to this growing trend, Fellowes is launching the new Powershred home and office series, including the P -57Cs, PS -77Cs, and SB -97Cs which meet the unique demands of all users without compromising on the need for safety. The shredders feature a patent -pending SafeSense™ technology that ensures the safety of the user, including children and larger pets, by automatically disabling the shredder when sensing hands or pets are too close to the "throat" or paper entry. An electronic sensor surrounds each shredder's paper entry and shuts down the machine immediately when it comes in contact with the energy field created by humans and larger pets. They also feature confetti -cut capabilities, ensuring that private information is destroyed into small, unidentifiable pieces.

'Safety has always been a top priority for Fellowes, and the new shredder line is a great example of our commitment to the issue,' said Kristen Gehrig, director, global marketing at Fellowes, Inc. 'With these shredders, parents can be confident that their work -related documents are being properly destroyed without sacrificing the safety of their families."

In addition to purchasing a shredder that is equipped with safety features, Appy recommends the following home office and work space safety tips to help minimize the risk of injury.

- Install all home office equipment in areas that are out of the reach of children.

- Keep your work space off -limits to children unless an adult is with them.

- If you have an entire room devoted to work space, consider installing a door lock and keeping it locked when not in use.

-Keep scissors, letters openers and all sharp office supplies away from edges of desks. Ideally, they should be kept in a drawer, out of children's sight and reach.

-Keep file cabinet drawers closed when not in use and large home office equipment securely on a desk and out of the reach of children to avoid tip -over dangers.

-Install safety covers in unused electrical outlets.

-Make sure all electrical cords are in good condition - if a cord is cracked, worn, or feels warm when you touch it, throw it away and get a new one.

-When using extension cords, power strips, and surge protectors, look for a certification label from an independent testing laboratory such as UL on both the package and the product itself.

About Fellowes

Headquartered in Itasca, Ill., Fellowes, Inc. offers an impressive range of products to equip the workspace, including paper shredders, binders and laminators, desktop accessories and record storage solutions. Fellowes, Inc. owns and operates subsidiaries in Canada, United Kingdom, Benelux, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, Singapore, Japan, Korea, China and Australia, the company employs more than 1,200 people throughout the world and expects global sales in excess of $700 million this year. For more information, visit


1. The survey interviewed 487 random full and part -time working adults ages 22 and older living in the United States during a four -day period starting September 28, 2006. The phone interviews were conducted via Opinion Research Corporation's Caravan Omnibus.

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