3 ON YOUR SIDE (3TV) - Arizona’s Family is holding a Mega Shred-a-Thon this coming Monday and it's free. It's important to shred your documents and here’s why.
For years, 3 Your Side has been warning consumers about the dangers of not shredding important documents.
In this previous report, we explained how a Valley man had come across a dumpster filled with boxes of personal information thrown out by a nearby company.
There were thousands of documents, including copies of driver’s licenses, Social Security numbers, checks with banking information and even dates of birth.
All that information in the wrong hands can lead to identity theft. Brian Watson is a special agent with the Internal Revenue Service.
"It's that information that could be used to file a false tax return or used to open up credit at a store or open up a credit card. That's the really valuable information," said Watson.
Watson says identity theft happens all the time, particularly during tax time.
"If your identity is stolen and used to file a tax return, it starts a process that can be painful, but it will get resolved," Watson said.
Remember, tax returns have bank account numbers as well as your Social Security number. It's everything a crook needs to steal your tax refund before you can get it.
"The shredding is most important when there's personal information on there, such as dates of birth or Social Security numbers," Watson said.
Remember, the Mega Shred-a-Thon is this coming Monday.
[MORE INFO: Take advantage of Arizona's Family Mega Shred-A-Thon]
It's going to be at Phoenix International Paper. You can bring up to 15 bank boxes. 3 On Your Side will be doing live reports there from sun up to sun down so come on out and see me and bring your documents.