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Free Shred It event April 17 helps fight ID theft
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Every 22.8 hours in Manteca during 2009 someone became a victim of fraud or forgery.

It can be a costly experience. The Better Business Bureau cites studies that show the average cost per fraud case is $6,383. Fraud runs the gamut from outright schemes designed to bilk people out of their money to identity theft.

The Manteca Solid Waste Division is offering Manteca residents one way to protect themselves against becoming a fraud victim. A free Shred It event will take place Saturday, April 17, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 a.m. It will take place at the municipal corporation yard on Wetmore Street off South Main Street adjacent to the animal shelter across from the water tower.

In a number of ID theft cases Manteca Police have found that crooks will pay the homeless money to rummage through Toters to seek personal information on everything from cancelled checks to credit card offers.

Police say all criminals need to find is information on your name and just your birth date and they are in business.

Manteca Police handled 385 fraud cases in 2009 including more than 120 cases of stolen identity. Each identity theft incident cost the victim well over $1,500 out of pocket even if their bank and credit card companies cover fraudulent charges. That is because it takes an average of 175 hours for an individual to clear up their credit and it more often than not requires taking time off from work to do it.

The no charge April 17 event also includes free E-waste recycling, free battery recycling, and free compost. To collect free compost you must bring your own shovels and containers.

For more information call Solid Waste at 456-8440.