Data shredders, as, for example, file shredders, are used to destroy confidential documents that are no longer needed by shredding them into pieces. A lot of shredders do not just shred paper but also other data carriers, such as CDs / DVDs or credit cards and, thus, protect them from data misuse. The maximum power of data shredders for personal and small office use is between 130 and 700 watts. The maximum power of appliances for open-plan offices or office floors is between about 700 and 2600 watts. The greater part of the annual power consumed by inefficient data shredders (90 to 97 %) is not consumed in the actual operating mode (paper shredding) but in “standby” and “off” mode.

The Blue Angel eco-label for data shredders may be awarded to appliances featuring low power consumption, long-lived design and avoidance of environmentally harmful materials.