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Protect Your Identity Dumpster Divers and Trash Pickers Steal Identities


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One of the most notorious cases of identity theft prosecuted was a case of dumpster diving. Dumpster diving is when someone goes through other people's trash looking for items they can use or sell.

In most cases, the dumpster diver is looking for clothing or household items, discarded by others, but useful to them. Some are even looking for food. Most dumpster divers are harmless; some are homeless and the items they're looking for are necessary to their survival.

Then there are the dumpster divers who are desperate; they're hooked on drugs and looking for whatever they can find to sell and finance their next fix. Back in the 1990's, Stephen Massey leader of an identity theft ring, meth addict and dumpster diver, stumbled upon the idea of stealing identities when he found barrels of recycled paper in a dump. These barrels contained everything he needed including names, addresses, birth dates and social security numbers.

Massey and his partner were caught and imprisoned in the year 2000. This case led to certain legislative acts forcing corporations and businesses to handle personal information more responsibly. Many use paper shredding services to dispose of paper containing personal and confidential information on their customers.

Corporations and business handling personal information with care is good, but people need to do this at home as well. Dumpster divers also go through trash cans; many have the trash pick-up routes down pat and their own schedules as to when they'll be in each neighborhood.

Office supply stores sell small paper shredders for homeowners as well as larger, commercial grade shredders for businesses. Very soon, paper shredders will be as common of a household item as the microwave oven.

People should be using care when throwing out junk mail, especially those annoying pre-approved credit card and mortgage loan letters which many people just throw out without opening. These are a great commodity to the identity thief; just what they need to get started in business.

In addition to identity theft, dumpster divers also pose a liability risk to business owners who have dumpsters. Most dumpster rental services provide dumpsters that can be locked at night.

This article was written by Sherman Rogers of All-waste, LLC, a dumpster rental company who provides dumpster delivery service and same-day dumpster pick-up service to residential, commercial, retail and industrial customers. Sherman has the size, shape and competitive priced dumpster for any size job. Other services include container service, trash pick-up, hauling rubble, waste removal and delivery of landscaping supplies including mulch, sod, top-soil, crush aggregate and more.

4751 22 Mile Road
Shelby Township, MI 48317-1515
Hours: 8:00am - 5:00pm Eastern Time
Monday - Friday (Excluding U. S. holidays)
Phone: 877-524-1002 Fax: 586-254-9936

Web site:


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