9 Spring Cleaning Tips to Thwart ID Theft

Spring is finally here! Spring arriving means that it’s the perfect time to go through all of your unused and unneeded documents and electronics that can potentially put you at risk for identity theft.


Follow these spring cleaning tips to help you:

  1. Take inventory – Know what you have
  2. Avoid holding onto unnecessary documents that have no value
  3. Only keep sensitive personally identifying information if you have a legitimate need for it
  4. Review (or update) your record retention schedule
    • Wills, power of attorney, marriage/divorce documents, birth certificates, trust documents, and military, records should be kept forever
    • Tax info, tax returns, investment records, bank statements, and cancelled checks should be kept for 3 years (some exceptions)
    • Tax returns should be kept forever
    • Credit card statements and utility bills should be kept for review to see if there are any transactions that should be disputed and then can be disposed with some exceptions
    • Insurance policies and warranties should be kept for as long as they are in effect
    • Home financial information should be kept for as long as you own the home and 3 years after for taxation purposes
  5. Add tags to your digital files to make them easily searchable
  6. Move and index files into a centralized external hard drive
  7. Delete digital photos and other media that have no value (blurry shots, corrupted files, etc.)
  9. Outsource document and hard drive destruction to a professional, secure shredding and data destruction service. Call AccuShred at 419-244-7473 or 800-747-3341