Identity theft reached an all-time high in 2014, proving that protecting personal and client identities is essential for both individuals and corporations. In July of 2014, an estimated 10.7 million cases of exposed identity were reported, as information was leaked via medical records and credit card scams. It was also reported that approximately 368 big data breaches of identity theft had occurred by mid-year, according to a news report done the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC). As of December 23, 2014 reports of exposed identity have increased to 83.2 million cases and the big data breaches of identity theft have increased to 761.
When personal identification information is leaked, this information can be used as a false ‘front’ for con-artists to use at their discretion. The information is used to open and max out credit cards, take out loans, transfer debt, and even usurp financial accounts. Their unrestricted use of your information can result in large monetary losses – sometimes without any immediate recourse or return. According to the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Sentinel Network (CSN) unsecured government documents and benefits fraud is the most common type of identity theft. At 34% it is closely followed by credit card and bank fraud. Victims of identity theft also commonly reported employment related fraud and loan fraud.
The only guaranteed way to protect your sensitive information from falling into the wrong hands is to destroy it. Thankfully, there are businesses that handle the destruction of highly sensitive personal and client information, making it possible for individuals, institutions, and businesses to dispose of confidential material quickly and effectively. Destroying physical copies of documents is crucial in protecting financial futures, but this precaution is not enough. In this digital age, one must consider the magnitude of information that we store in our electronic devices, and we must be aware that a common resource for these ‘information predators’ is our electronic media. So, in the same way that one considers shredding paper documentation a precaution, one must consider completely destroying the electronic information on a phone, computer, or hard-drive. Complete destruction of the device is essential for any comprehensive security plan. Merely erasing a drive, disk, or phone can no longer be a trusted safeguard due to ‘fraudster IT knowledge’ and computer reconstruction efforts. It is better to hire a professional device destruction company that will pulverise the device until only dust remains. By this method, the information can no longer be accessed by anyone.
It’s a statistical fact that identity theft is a rapidly growing security issue, so it’s imperative that one takes the appropriate measures to protect private information. A professional destruction service can obliterate any digital device one owns, but only one can present a guarantee that the data is irretrievable. Absolute Destruction can pulverise the pieces until not even the most skilled computer technician could rebuild them. But what about the left over pieces? Once a device has been dismantled, many of its parts can be safely recycled. When one hires their electronic data destruction services, three things are guaranteed: the data can no longer be accessed and identities are secure; the tiny pieces can be disposed of in a manner that is beneficial to the environment; and various parts of the device can be recycled.