BBB “Secure Your ID” Day Offers Free Shredding and Take-home Advice to Fight Identity Theft
Arlington, VA – September 16, 2008 - In response to high consumer demand and due to the unprecedented success of the first-ever BBB “Secure Your ID” Day in May, Better Business Bureau announced today that its second community service campaign event to fight ID theft will take place on Saturday, September 20, in nearly 90 communities across the U.S. and Canada.
BBB is partnering with leading national organizations Equifax, ProQuo and National Association for Information Destruction (NAID), all with a strong stake and position in the ID theft prevention arena. Working together, these four organizations will provide consumers and small businesses with free on-site document shredding, expert identity protection advice and substantive solutions to add to consumers’ identity protection mix.
“BBB has a long track record as a consumer protection organization, and identity theft and fraud is a serious assault on consumers,” said Steve Cole, president and CEO, Council of Better Business Bureaus. “Consumers are really their own best line of defense. They hold the power over their own protection more than they may realize and we’re here to show them how.”
Last year alone, 8.1 million Americans became victims of ID theft, resulting in the loss of $45 billion, according to a 2008 report from Javelin Strategy and Research. The report notes that, in cases where the source of the ID theft was known, the majority (56 percent) of ID theft occurred when the thief had direct contact with the victim’s personal information, through a stolen or lost wallet, rifling through a personal mailbox or trash can, or even lifting documents from inside a home or business.
“Identity theft is a real threat to the power of consumers’ credit, buying power and overall financial health,” says Steve Ely, president, Equifax Personal Information Solutions. “Consumers who take steps to proactively protect their identity, like shredding sensitive documents, significantly reduce their personal risk of becoming victims.”
BBB’s first “Secure Your ID” Day simultaneously served 54 communities across the U.S. and Canada. More than 500,000 pounds of sensitive documents were responsibly disposed of, making BBB “Secure Your ID” Day the largest single-day event of its kind ever held. For the upcoming event, BBB has expanded on-site services and increased the number of total communities reached to nearly 90. With this expanded service area, BBB leaders expect the upcoming event to exceed the previous record.
Participants are encouraged to bring up to three boxes or bags of documents to be shredded and are asked to remove all documents from binders.
BBB and its national partners, Equifax, ProQuo and NAID, are committed to providing identity protection solutions and products to consumers and businesses to help them safeguard their identities.
“One of the best ways to fight identity theft is to control how businesses use your personal information,” said Steve Gal, CEO of ProQuo.com, which offers a free service for stopping junk mail and helping consumers remove their names from thousands of marketing lists. “The less your name and personal data is used without your consent, the better protected you are. We are proud to work with BBB in the fight against identity theft.”
Read more information about BBB"Secure Your ID"Day and find a participating BBB near you
BBB is an unbiased non-profit organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Businesses that earn BBB accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization’s high standards of ethical business behavior. BBB provides objective advice, free business BBB Reliability ReportsTM and charity BBB Wise Giving ReportsTM, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust. To
further promote trust, BBB also offers complaint and dispute resolution support for consumers and businesses when there is difference in viewpoints. The first BBB was founded in 1912. Today, 125 BBBs serve communities across the U.S. and Canada, evaluating and monitoring nearly 4 million local and national businesses and charities.
Equifax empowers businesses and consumers with information they can trust. A global leader in information solutions, we leverage one of the largest sources of consumer and commercial data, along with advanced analytics and proprietary technology, to create customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.
Customers have trusted Equifax for over 100 years to deliver innovative solutions with the highest integrity and reliability. Businesses – large and small – rely on us for consumer and business credit intelligence, portfolio management, fraud detection, decisioning technology, marketing tools, and much more. We empower individual consumers to manage their personal credit information, protect their identity, and maximize their financial well-being.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, Equifax Inc. employs approximately 7,000 people in 14 countries through North America, Latin America and Europe. Equifax is a member of Standard & Poor’s (S&P) 500® Index. Our common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol EFX. www.equifax.com
The National Association for Information Destruction (NAID) is the nonprofit trade organization of the secure destruction industry. With over 1,200 member locations, NAID members provide secure destruction services to business and government across North America.
ProQuo was founded to put consumers in control of their personal information, letting them decide if and how businesses use it. ProQuo helps consumers stop the junk mail they don’t want and get the offers they really do want. The company is led by pioneers in the online security and privacy arena and has served hundreds of thousands of consumers since launching in October 2007. www.proquo.com.