Identity Theft and Shredding

8:46 pm Document Destruction, Houston, Paper Shredding, Shredder

Identity theft generally occurs when a person uses bits of information about a person, which is usually the person’s social security number, and uses that information to represent himself or herself as that particular person for cheating purposes. Examples of such cheating and fraudulent activities are very common. The fraudulent person may use these pieces of information to their advantage and obtain credit cards, loans, apartments, getting a cell phone, buying a house or car, etc and all this in someone else’s name. The number of victims facing experiencing such crimes is not a small number. A rough estimate puts the number of identity theft victims anything near the 700,000 mark.

It is very easy for criminals to get hold of the social security number of an individual. The social security number is used by most people as a proof of their identity and is used in universities, schools, libraries, insurance, banks, military, securities trading, etc. identity thieves scan through the garbage outside cafes, bars, restaurants, houses and business offices so that they can find the social security numbers of the individuals, as the social security number is being rampantly used in various places as proof of identity. As the paper in the garbage is generally not shred, just crushed up and thrown away, it is very easy to get the social security number. Once the miscreants get hold of the number, then there is no way stopping them from misusing that number for their own fraudulent motives.

There is another way of getting the social security number. Generally the thieves check the garbage outside offices, banks, mortgage companies and ATM counters, in search of loan slips or credit slips or ATM slips. Many of these documents also carry the social security number or the bank account number of the individual. Once the thieves get hold of either of the numbers, either they use it themselves or pass the information to some other thief or a group of thieves. All this happens because the slips are not shred. If the slips were shred, the thieves could do no harm, even if they go on sifting through the garbage all day.

So, it is very important that we all understand the importance of shredders and shredding. It is high time that all of us, be it an individual, a business house, banks, mortgage houses, cafes, restaurants or the law enforcing agencies, should understand the benefits of shredding and use it to safeguard our interests.

 

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