All Points Mobile Shredding Blog

ID Theft & the Deceased

Can Family Members Who’ve Passed Become Victims of ID Theft?

The sad truth is that anyone can become a victim of ID theft. The deceased are no exception. And because criminals who specialize in stealing personal information are always on the prowl, it’s crucial that you protect yourself, your family and your loved ones even after they’ve passed away. When someone dies, it is not uncommon for family members to toss out outdated papers that contain personal information–the type of information that can give thieves access to their social security number, birthdate, address, bank and credit card information and more. Some of the first steps to take right away are to freeze your loved ones credit accounts–it can take years before fraud is flagged on a deceased person’s file, allowing thieves to open loans, credit accounts, file for tax returns or unemployment etc. before it becomes known. Another key way to safeguard your loved one’s information is to have any unwanted or unneeded documents permanently destroyed by having them professionally shredded. Never recycle papers that contain confidential facts. 

Reducing the Risk

Losing a loved one is difficult to say the least, but it can become infinitely more painful when family members have to deal with protecting that person’s ID from fraud or theft.  Whether your loved one left detailed instructions, had all their paperwork organized or were not prepared at all, the process of going through all their important documents and papers and knowing what to keep and what to shred can be confusing and overwhelming.

Items That Must Be Kept

While many documents can be scanned and stored digitally in the cloud, there are some personal papers that must also be kept as hard copies. Some of these items include:

Bank Account Paperwork
Life Insurance Policies
Wills & Trusts
Death Certificates
Birth Certificates
Marriage Licenses & Divorce Certificates
Power of Attorney
Three Years of Tax Returns

Scan & Back-up

Although you will keep the important papers, it is recommended that all documents be scanned and backed up. This is so that in the event of a flood, fire or some other unexpected event, you have kept the documents safe.

Dealing with the loss of someone you love is difficult and painful and it can become even harder if you have to deal with ID theft. Be sure to follow these tips and ensure that you have mitigated the risks as much as possible.

All Points Mobile Shredding can assist you in protecting the personal information of you and all of your loved ones. We provide full service shredding and destruction to residential and business customers throughout South Florida. We provide a certificate of destruction with every shred to give you peace of mind that all of your documents have been permanently destroyed.

Give us a call today or fill out this form for more information.

Dawn Connelly

Dawn is the vice president of All Points Mobile Shredding. All Points Mobile Shredding is a family-owned and operated on-site document destruction company that has been serving the Treasure Coast, Palm Beaches, and surrounding areas since 1994.

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