I took three bags full of paper to a postal store last night on Torrance Boulevard that advertised that they do document destruction.
Like anyone else who reads this blog, we have so many pieces of paper in our home that have our address or other personal information, and we don’t want that to fall into the hands of identity thieves who pick through trash and recycling bins.
We have a little shredder here at home, but it can only handle so much paper before it starts begging for mercy. If we’d fed it a little every day, we wouldn’t have gotten into this position, but everyone procrastinates, and before you know it, you’ve got three trash bags full of these bits of paper.
The gentleman at the postal store weighed my bags. Two were 11 pounds, and one was 13 pounds. Document destruction costs $1.95 per pound. So we paid $68.25 to get rid of our potential identity thief bounty. It was probably almost a year’s worth, but still….
After the weigh-in, the postal store guy started stuffing my paper into a narrow slot on top of a locked, wheeled trash bin. He swore he didn’t have the key. The idea was, I would watch him jam this stuff into the bin, which Weyerhauser would pick up later. It took him about 10 minutes.
It ended up being kind of a social occasion. We talked a lot about paper, shredders, and the things people mail us that create vulnerability. Like credit-card offers. You’d think it would be illegal by now to send out credit card applications with pre-printed addresses. This is an open invitation to identity theft and destruction of your credit rating. Catalogues embed your name and address not just on the mailing label, but also the order form deep inside. If you’re like me, your first reaction at seeing this part of the order form filled out was, “aren’t they clever?” It’s not clever. Getting too much of this kind of unsolicited mail can cost you $68.25.