Halton Police are actively working to combat identity theft and related fraud incidents in the region. One way Crime Stoppers of Halton, in partnership with Blue-Pencil Information Management, is achieving this is by hosting ‘shredding events’.
During these events, residents throughout the region can come out to feed Blue-Pencil’s secure mobile shredder with unwanted and/or old documents.
The most recent ‘Shred Event’ was held on May 25, 2019, and, according to Halton Police, there was a good turnout.
“Within an hour, Blue Pencil had to dispatch a second truck to handle the volume of shredding,” Nadine Clarke, Halton Crime Stopper’s Police Coordinator, said in a statement. “Over 500 residents and business owners came out to safely and securely dispose of documents, and through their generosity helped raise over $10,000 to support Crime Stoppers on-going community engagement and tip reward activities. This was a huge success for everyone involved”.
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According to a recent Halton Police press release, two mobile Blue-Pencil Information Management shredding trucks were filled with over 26,000 pounds of shredded paper (close to 12-tonnes).
The event lasted for four hours.
“We appreciate Blue-Pencil’s partnership for this shred event to help residents of Halton safely and securely dispose of their sensitive and confidential information,” David Wood, director of Halton Crime Stoppers, said in a statement.
Wood continued to explain that although anyone can become a victim of identity theft and financial fraud, seniors and the elderly can be particularly vulnerable.
“When thinking about the secure disposal of your own sensitive personal documents, please also consider helping your family and friends protect themselves,” Wood said in a statement.
One way to prevent these incidents from occuring is to ensure that items such as cancelled cheques, banking, tax, and other financial records, and/or anything containing personal information is never put into regular garbage or recycling streams.
“In the hands of criminals, these documents can be easily used to obtain credit cards, access bank accounts, obtain passports and other identification, or even to obtain a mortgage on your home without your knowledge until it’s too late,” reads the press release. “Destroying confidential and business documents is the best way to protect yourself and your family from becoming victims of fraud.”
According to the release, identity theft is one of the largest means of fraud with losses running into the billions of dollars.
The next shredding event will take place on Saturday, October 5, 2019, at the Halton Police Headquarters.
Photos are courtesy of Halton Police.