If you’re worried you might become a victim of identity theft, it may be with good reason. Identity theft is a major problem in the U.S. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) showed 332,646 ID theft complaints in its 2014 Consumer Sentinel Network report. Of those, 25,843 were Texas identity theft victims.
One way to reduce your risk of becoming a victim of ID theft is by shredding documents containing sensitive personal information. Better Business Bureau (BBB) serving Central, Coastal, Southwest Texas and the Permian Basin invites consumers and businesses to participate in its 2015 Spring Shred Day event in Waco on Saturday, May 2 at 9 a.m.
Free shredding and recycling services will be available until noon or until the shred trucks reach capacity. Consumers can bring up to two boxes of sensitive documents per vehicle to be shred on-site. Monetary donations benefiting BBB’s Education Foundation will also be accepted.
BBB serving Central, Coastal, Southwest Texas and the Permian Basin is part of an expansive network of local BBBs across North America that collaborates to produce bi-annual Shred Day events. The program is a BBB-branded identity theft, fraud prevention and educational initiative.
Date: Saturday, May 2, 2015
Time: 9:00AM – 12:00PM
Address: KWTX-TV Studios
6700 American Plaza
Waco, Texas 76712
There are numerous ways to have your identity stolen, from phishing to dumpster diving. But there are ways you can protect your identity. BBB offers these steps to keep your personal information safe:
- Shred all sensitive documents. Shred all statements and documents you get in the mail that you don’t want to keep, including credit card applications, insurance forms, financial statements, health forms and billing statements for utilities and phone service.
- Protect your Social Security number, account numbers and passwords. Don’t carry these numbers in your wallet. Give out your Social Security number only if absolutely necessary, and offer to provide another type of personal identifier, if possible.
- Never give personal information over the phone or to unknown persons. Unless you are the one initiating the phone call, you should not give your Social Security number, driver’s license number or bank account information over the phone.
- Monitor your bank and credit card transactions for unauthorized transactions. Crooks with your account number generally start with small transactions to see if you’ll notice.
- Steer clear of suspicious texts, emails and links. Unsolicited e-mails and pop-up ads can be full of computer viruses designed to steal usernames and passwords from your computer. Don’t give in to curiosity. Close or delete the message.
- Check your credit report at least once a year. There is only one source authorized to give you a free annual credit file from each of the three consumer credit reporting companies. Visit AnnualCreditReport.com to find out more.as identity theft victims.