Identity thieves have never shied from targeting society’s most vulnerable citizens like our seniors and veterans. Now, they have reached even lower lows – victimizing children, oftentimes ones younger than age 7.
To help protect both adults and children from suffering fraud, I will hold a shredder event for sensitive documents from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at the Lower Macungie Township Administration Building at 3402 Brookside Road in Macungie
The Lower Macungie Township supervisors and Sen. Pat Browne, R-Lehigh, are joining me to offer free document-shredding to residents.
CNBC, citing a Javelin Strategy & Research Study, reported more than 1 million children fell victim to identity fraud in 2017. Children can have their Social Security number stolen at any age, with an estimated two-thirds victimized at age 7 or younger.
The study found that adolescent victims were more likely to be preyed on by an identity thief who is known to them, rather than a stranger. Comparatively, the study says only 7 percent of adult victims know the thief of their identity.
The Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General recommends steps to protect sensitive information for yourself and your family members. Those steps include:
Being suspicious of callers and websites asking for sensitive information, like account numbers.
Ensuring mail is collected and not left to gather in a mailbox or area that can be accessed by a thief.
Checking your credit report for free once every 12 months through AnnualCreditReport.com, which is a service of the three main credit bureaus.
Using unique passwords and memorizing them, rather than writing them down.
The state attorney general also recommends shredding sensitive documents, including bank statements, credit card bills, receipts, utility bills, ATM receipts, and pre-approved credit offers.
That shredding can be accomplished by residents only, not businesses, during the event May 4. Residents can bring up to four boxes (10”x12.5”x16”) or equivalent (the approximate size of carry-on luggage) per vehicle to the township building.
Do not bring old phone books, magazines, folders, birthday cards, junk mail, and similar materials, as those can be recycled for the curb. This event is designed for sensitive documents.
You do not have to remove any staples or paper clips, but please take documents out of binders and notebooks.
For more information, call my office at 610-965-9933.
Representative Ryan Mackenzie
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Tricia Lehman