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DA warns against identity theft, provides way to prevent fraud & dispose of unwanted and expired medications

Media, PA – As a continued effort to prevent identity theft, District Attorney Katayoun M. Copeland is providing a way for residents to safely and securely dispose of their electronics including computers, tablets, cell phones, and hard drives as well as the shredding of personal documents for free. As Heroin Task Force Chairperson, District Attorney Copeland emphasizes the importance of disposing of unwanted, unused, and expired medications so residents will also have the opportunity to dispose of their medications at the District Attorney’s Mobile Drug Drop Box. The identity theft prevention and drug collection event will take place on Saturday, March 23, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the rear parking lot of the Manoa Shopping Center located at 130 N. Eagle Road, West Chester Pike/Rt. 3 in Havertown. This event is rain or shine.

“The District Attorney’s Office is committed to protecting the community against identity theft and ensuring resources are available to those who may have experienced other issues as a result of their identity being stolen,” said District Attorney Katayoun Copeland. “One of the most effective ways citizens can safeguard themselves against identity thieves is by properly destroying documents and electronic storage devices that contain personal and sensitive information in a secure manner.”

All items will be recycled, and a document shredding truck will be available to shred residents’ personal documents at no cost. Residents are encouraged to bring the following items for shredding: tax returns older than five years; statements from banks and financial institutions; cancelled checks; paycheck stubs; credit card applications; and unneeded medical records and billing statements.

When it comes to disposing of electronics, District Attorney Copeland advises residents to ensure proper disposal, as electronic devices can provide information to criminals who are seeking to steal someone’s identity. “We use technology daily and on a number of devices, and it is second nature that often we are unaware that you put yourself at risk of having your identity stolen each time you turn on a device,” said District Attorney Copeland. “Cell phones, tablets, computers and hard drives store our personal information, passwords, and other sensitive information that can be detrimental to your financial well-being if it lands in the wrong hands. It is imperative we work together to properly dispose of these documents, devices, and medications,” she said.

Criminal Investigation Division (CID) detectives and members of the District Attorney’s Office will be available to assist with unloading boxes from vehicles and to provide free brochures and information on preventing identity theft and safeguarding your prescription medications.

In addition to providing the safe and secure disposal of documents and electronics, the event will also be a medication disposal event. Residents are encouraged to drop off their expired or unwanted prescription and over-the-counter medications which are a potential source of supply for illegal use and a public health risk. Studies show over 70 percent of drug abusers obtain them from family and friends, including the home medicine cabinet. By disposing of unwanted medications, residents can reduce the supply of prescription drugs available to those who may steal, abuse or sell these drugs.

Residents can dispose of unwanted drugs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at any of the permanent medicine drop boxes located at police stations across Delaware County. Details and locations can be found by visiting the Heroin Task Force website at www.co.delaware.pa.us/heroin.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: March 12, 2019
CONTACT PERSON: Chelsey Price, 484-502-9976

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