(COSTA MESA, April 3, 2010) – The Automobile Club of Southern California, Cintas Service Professionals and Experian are hosting a free Shred-a-Thon to help deter identity theft for Costa Mesa, Fountain Valley, Huntington Beach and Newport Beach Auto Club members and local residents.
The pre-Earth Day event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 17, at the Auto Club’s Administrative Offices, 3333 Fairview Road, Costa Mesa. Enter the event from Susan Street.
Auto Club members and residents are invited to bring up to 5 banker boxes or 5 paper grocery bags filled with junk mail, personal papers, and old tax records that may contain names, birth dates, and account numbers, to the Auto Club for free on-site shredding. More than 11 million Americans were victims of identity theft last year, a 37 percent increase from 2008, according to Javelin Strategy & Research, a California firm that studied identity theft threats.
The Javelin survey also showed that thieves stole $54 billion from identity theft victims of all ages and 18 to 24-year-olds who are active online were most at risk for ID theft.
"The community event will highlight the importance of destroying personal information properly, and critical step in protecting one’s identity, along with drawing attention to recycling and Earth Day,” said Denise Bialek, program manager of AAA Discounts.
Plastic bags and binders, folders, computer disks, laminated paper, or other non-paper materials should be removed prior to attending the Shred-a-Thon. All shredded material will be recycled.
Auto Club staff will greet drivers. Certified Cintas workers will load documents into 64 gallon bins, which are dumped into trucks customized to shred large volumes of documents into pin-sized bits. Banker boxes and paper bags also will be collected for shredding and recycling as well. (One visit per person, please.)
Along with shredding and recycling, Auto Club members and local residents are invited to attend an identity theft presentation by Experian, which provides an identity theft benefit to Auto Club members. An Experian representative will speak at 11 AM, Noon and 1 PM in the Auto Club’s Administrative Office Cafeteria.
Auto Club members and local residents may also attend a discussion by Auto Club automotive experts about the Auto Club’s Green Car Guide and fuel savings tips at 10:30 AM, 12:30 and 1:30 PM in the Cafeteria’s Rooms G, H & I. They can also view a number of green vehicles featured in the guide, including the report’s number one selection, which also will be displayed.
No food or beverages will be served, but the first 100 vehicles to visit the Shred-a-Thon in the west parking lot will receive one blue canvas Auto Club tote bag to reduce plastic bag use.