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Preventing Identity Theft by Shredding Confidential Documents

Identity theft is one of the fastest growing crimes in the country, however, there are some positive steps you can take to decrease your risk of identity theft (see Tips to Protect Your Identity for the full list). One key step is to carefully destroy papers that contain sensitive or identifying information by securely shredding them.

CNB’s Fall Community Shred Days

CNB will be hosting three Fall Community Shred Days. These events offer complimentary shredding services with a secure provider. Those who would like to use this service can simply collect the documents that you would like to have securely disposed of and bring them to the Shred Day Event that is most convenient. Please note that this complimentary service is open to all customers and non-customers.

What Documents Should I Shred?

With our Shred Days approaching, our security experts put together a list of the documents that should be shredded:

  • Bank statements and canceled checks older than 7 years.
  • Paycheck stubs after reconciled with W-2 form and taxes are paid.
  • ATM receipts once they are compared with your bank statement.
  • Credit card statements older than 7 years.
  • Credit card receipts once they are compared with your credit card statement.
  • Utility bills and other household receipts after 3 years. Large purchases should be retained for insurance purchases.
  • Warranties if you no longer have the item.
  • Insurance policies which are no longer in effect (nothing current).
  • Personal documents and pictures (your discretion).

What Documents Should I Keep?

There are certain documents or permanent files you should keep forever which include, wills, powers of attorney, birth certificates, marriage documents, divorce or child care orders, trust documents, investment documents, income tax payment checks, income tax returns and worksheets, business agreements, and military records to name a few. 

For more guidance on which documents to shred or keep, visit the New York State Department of State, Division of Consumer Protection Website or call the Consumer Assistance Hotline at (518) 474-8583 or (800) 697-1220. 

For more security articles visit our Security Center.