Local credit union holds shredding event, raising security awareness

As much of the conversation about securing your data revolves around cyber attacks, one group in eastern Iowa is helping people protect sensitive info on paper.
Published: Sep. 18, 2022 at 12:23 AM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Though much of the conversation about securing your data in 2022 revolves around cyber-attacks, some in eastern Iowa are helping to protect sensitive information on paper.

Car after car lined up in the Veridian Credit Union parking lot in Cedar Rapids on Saturday as employees unloaded boxes of paper containing sensitive information into a recycle bin and shredded it. It was part of Community Shred Week to help people like Jackie Tollefson get rid of recycling which could lead to information getting into the wrong hands.

“You can pick it up out of the trash and have everybody’s information,” Tollefson said.

Gretchen Light, learning development specialist for Veridia, said it was important to host events like this because the dangers of losing information weren’t only online.

“There are fraudsters out there that try to take advantage any way they can,” Light said. “Making sure that your documents and anything that has your information on it are destroyed.”

Light said they’ve been holding these community events since 2009, and it wasn’t just about security. She said they’ve collected over 1.3 million pounds of paper and saved over 10,000 trees.

“We’ll destroy all the paper on site that we put into the bins and shred them immediately,” Light said.

It was giving people like Tollefson a chance to keep themselves safe from any information getting into the wrong hands.

“Identity theft is a big one,” Tollefson said.