Monday, October 10, 2005

Shredders Become Must-Have Gadget

Jenn Abelson
Boston Globe
October 5, 2005

Kate Luchini says she really isn't a paranoid person. But after she discovered a stranger rummaging through her trash on a quiet cul-de-sac in Salem, Mass., Luchini recently armed herself with a $27 shredder on sale at Target.

"I never thought I would get a shredder, but it was weird having someone look through my garbage," Luchini said. "I plan to shred bank statements, credit card offers, and who knows what else."

Paper shredders, once associated with high-profile evidence trashers from Oliver North to Enron executives, have gone mainstream thanks to growing concerns about identity theft. There have been dozens of major identity theft cases this year, affecting nearly 10 million Americans, and new reports show these crimes are more frequently committed using bank statements and other personal documents than over the Internet.

In June, the federal government enacted the nation's first shredding law...

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