North Carolina Department of Justice
North Carolina Department of Justice
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Take advantage of free fall shred-a-thons to thwart ID theft

Release date: 10/17/2013

AG Cooper encourages consumers to shred old records at one of 19 free shredding events

Raleigh: Attorney General Roy Cooper is urging North Carolina consumers to bring old financial records they no longer need to one of more than a dozen free shred-a-thons planned across the state this fall.

Between this weekend and Thanksgiving, 19 free shredding events are planned across North Carolina.  Several shred-a-thons are planned this weekend including two in Raleigh, one in Charlotte, one in Lenoir (Caldwell County), and one in Forest City (Rutherford County).  Shred-a-thons are scheduled to take place in the coming weeks in Raleigh, Rocky Mount, Asheville, Mooresville, Cherokee, Roxboro, Fletcher, Chandler, Linden, Franklin, Cornelius, Sylva, Waynesville, Buxton and Greenville.  Multiple events are planned for some cities.

“Old documents containing personal information can be a treasure trove to low tech criminals looking to steal your identity,” Cooper said.  “Shredding these old documents is a great way to protect yourself from becoming a victim of identity theft.”

A complete list shred-a-thon locations, dates, times and event sponsors is available at www.ncdoj.gov
 
The shred-a-thons are sponsored by a number of groups, including Cooper’s office, the Better Business Bureau, credit unions, shredding companies and local civic groups, law enforcement and media.  Consumers can protect themselves from identity theft by bringing pre-approved credit card offers, old bills, out-of-date account statements and other documents that include personal information to any of the shred-a-thons.
 
More shredding events are being planned for upcoming months and will be posted at www.ncdoj.gov The Attorney General’s Office also shares information about upcoming shred-a-thons via Facebook and Twitter.  Local groups that would like tips on how to organize shred-a-thons in their communities can contact the Attorney General’s Office for help at Outreach@ncdoj.gov.

“My office and other community partners recognize that keeping your sensitive information out of the hands of criminals helps us all, and that’s why these free events for North Carolina consumers are so important,” Cooper said.

For more protection from identity theft, Cooper also suggests the following tips:

  • Guard your personal information.  Don’t carry your Social Security card, and give out your Social Security Number only when absolutely necessary.  Never share your SSN or other personal financial information with anyone you don’t know who calls, texts, or emails you, no matter who they claim to be.  Legitimate companies will not ask for your personal information this way.
  • Check your credit reports regularly.  You’re entitled to one free credit report every year from each of the three major credit bureaus.  To get your free report, go to www.annualcreditreport.com or call 1-877-322-8228.  To track your credit throughout the year, request a free report from a different credit bureau every four months. 
  • Consider a free security freeze. Guard against ID theft by placing a freeze on your credit reports online for free.  Seniors and victims of identity theft can also freeze their credit by telephone or mail for free.  Placing security freezes on your credit prevents identity thieves from opening new accounts or taking out credit cards and loans in your name. Detailed information about how to place a free security freeze is available at www.ncdoj.gov.
  • Stop pre-approved credit card applications.  Call 1-888-5-OPT-OUT or visit www.optoutprescreen.com to stop pre-approved credit card applications that an ID thief could steal and use to get credit in your name.

Media contact: Noelle Talley (919) 716-6413