Shredding sheds light on identity theft prevention tactics

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Identity theft, it seems, is becoming more and more common with the use of online applications. But hardcopy documents are still a go-to for identity thieves.

Fresno-based Central Valley Community Bank (CVCB) is helping the community to protect itself against such ne’er-do-wells with shredding.

From April 10 to May 15, CVCB will be offering its 12th Annual Free Document Shredding events throughout the Central Valley, allowing the community to safely dispose of documents that could contain personal information used by identity thieves.

“We pride ourselves on being a trusted resource for customers and the community by providing educational programs like our Annual Document Shredding events strategically held during tax season as a reminder of this important subject,” said James M. Ford, president and CEO of CVCB. “Our goal is to provide a safe and convenient location for community members to shred sensitive documents and to learn helpful tips to protect themselves from identity theft and cybercrimes.”

Whether people are customers of the bank are not, all are welcome to attend one of the 20 shredding events. Each person is allowed up to four banker boxes. The documents should be paper only and free of paperclips, binder clips or staples.

According to a report published by Javelin Strategy and Research, 16.7 million Americans were affected by identity theft in 2017, which is an 8 percent increase over 2016.

“Knowing what documents to save, where and how to save them safely and how to discard sensitive documents properly can make a world of difference in protecting yourself or your business against identity theft,” said Sergeant Brian Rogers of the Fresno Police Department. “Taking every precaution possible may be difficult, but it is critical to avoid becoming a victim.”

CVCB offers other services online to help people become educated on proper storage or disposal of personal documents.

Shredding events will take place at CVCB from 9 a.m. to 12 noon, and locations can be found at www.cvcb.com/shredding.

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