A few weeks ago, my family got the call everyone dreads. We went from putting down the deposit for a new apartment to joining the millions of Americans who have had their personal information — and money — stolen. To make matters worse, the perpetrators spent the money on some of my favorite things: Apple products. How they got our information is unclear; anything from a leaked student loan document to a poorly-disposed-of bank statement could have aided the process. So after a few hours of phone calls, buckling down and investing in some identity theft protection, I did what I felt at the time to be the most important thing I could do: I researched small-scale paper shredders. (We all deal with trauma in different ways.) There’s just one problem: paper shredders are incredibly ugly, not anything you’d normally leave out on your counter for guests to see — that is, except for Muji’s.
You see, Muji’s compact paper shredder not only effectively shreds documents to smithereens, it looks good doing it. Make no mistake, this seven-inch tool isn’t going to single-handedly destroy your tax returns or credit cards; a hulking, electronic monstrosity like this one would be better suited. This tool is perfect for shredding envelope-sized documents like old bills, pay stubs, bank statements and even receipts that contain your personal information, and it does it all manually with a simple series of twists. The benefits? Making this shredder part of your monthly bill disposal routine will keep you safe, sure. But less explicitly perhaps, especially if you’ve been burned in the past, is that handheld shredder an incredibly therapeutic way to destroy any evidence that identity thieves might find useful.