\"wake up\" to prevent identity theft.
\"I think people do need to wake up,\" said Mr Jordan, director of forensic services with forensic accounting firm PPB McCallum Pettersen. Buy a shredder; make it a bit more difficult for someone to go through your trash bin.
A recent survey by technology security company Unisys found that almost one-third of people throw their bank and credit card statements in the rubbish without destroying them. It also found 10 per cent relied on easily remembered numbers such as a birthday when creating a Pin.
Last week a 17-agency Identity Theft Task Force set up last year by United States President George W Bush issued a 190-page plan to combat identity theft. It recommended setting up a National Identity Theft Enforcement Centre in the US, where nine million people are victims of the crime each year.
Other recommendations included requiring the private sector to safeguard personal data collected, a major consumer awareness campaign and tougher laws, with a mandatory two-year jail sentence for identity thieves who use the stolen identity to commit crimes.