On Saturday, October 20, local nonprofit Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Maryland and Delaware (CCCS) hosted its second annual “Protect Your Identity” SHRED-IT event. The event was presented in partnership with WPOC-FM, Towson University, Cintas, and 911CellPhoneBank.org. CCCS Executive Vice President Lori Jankalski notes, “This definitely was a team effort! CCCS wants to thank all our partners, staff members, clients, and community contacts that helped make the event a success. In just two hours, we safely disposed of more than 5,000 POUNDS of paper. That’s a lot of credit card statements, utility bills, and records that will not fall into the hands of identity thieves.”
The CCCS SHRED-IT event was held in recognition of National Protect Your Identity Week (10/20 -10/27/12). Community members received free materials on how to identify, prevent, and deal with identity theft and were able to bring documents for free, cross-cut shredding. Old cell phones were likewise collected. Once these phones are wiped clean of personal information, they will be redistributed at no charge to people in need. WPOC-FM provided on-site enthusiasm and music. Jankalski acknowledges, “WPOC’s Michael J, Bob Delmont, and Dustin Sugar-Moore really helped make this an event to remember.”
Identity theft occurs when someone uses your personal identifying information, like your name, Social Security number, or credit card number, without your permission, to commit fraud or other crimes.
- According to the FTC, more than 9 million U.S. consumers have their identities stolen each year -- that’s 19 victims per minute.
- Victims generally spend hundreds of dollars and scores of hours to restore their identities.
- One way to safeguard your identity is to regularly destroy confidential personal and business documents.
CCCS President and CEO Jim Godfrey notes: “Identity theft is still a very serious problem. In fact, it’s currently the fastest growing crime in the U.S. One of the key elements of our mission is to provide financial education to those we serve. We’re happy to have this opportunity to educate local residents about this grave issue and are delighted by their active participation in the event.”
CCCS offers a free, self-paced online course, where consumers can learn more about how to identify, prevent, and manage identity theft. To access the course, simply go to CCCS’s website (www.cccs-inc.org) and click on the e-Learning tab on the Education menu. To schedule an identity theft workshop, please contact CCCS Communications and Community Outreach Manager Deanna Booker at 410-747-2050 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consumer Credit Counseling Service of MD & DE, Inc. (CCCS) is an accredited 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency that has served the local community since 1966. CCCS helps stabilize communities by creating hope and promoting economic self-sufficiency to individuals and families through financial education and counseling. MD State License #14-01.