Tip of the Week: Mark national Secure Your ID Day
Even with all the high-tech scams used to steal personal financial information, the most common way for people to be victimized is through old-fashioned manual (or visual) theft.
More than half of all identity theft occurs when the thief had direct contact with the victim’s personal information, through a stolen or lost wallet, rifling through a personal mailbox or trash can, or even lifting documents from inside a home or business.
The Internet and spam e-mails abound with attempts to steal Social Security numbers, personal identification numbers and account numbers, but 56 percent of identity theft crimes start with low-tech methods.
Chances are, you have paperwork sitting around that you don’t need, but a scam artist does. If you don’t need it, dispose of it through the Better Business Bureau’s nationwide Secure Your ID Day on May 3.
“Shredding sensitive paper documents is an important first step, but it doesn’t end there,” Joy Bender of the Better Business Bureau said in a statement. “That’s why BBB experts will be distributing important advice and simple steps everyone can take to prevent ID theft in their daily lives, both online and off.”
The free shredding service will be coupled with dispensing resources for protecting personal information.
“This is largely a crime of access,” Bender said. “Our goal here is to make the information less accessible and empower people to be their own first line of defense against identity theft.”
For information about how Secure Your ID Day will be marked in your area, visit www.us.bbb.org