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CHARLOTTE, N.C. Prepare to shred those old documents, bills, credit card forms and anything else with your personal information on it.

The North Carolina Attorney General s Office (www.ncdoj.gov) is sponsoring shred events around the state this month.

A complete list of the events can be found atwww.ncdoj.gov. The Charlotte event is being held at the St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Church at 6828 Old Reid Road from 9 a.m. until noon.It is a free event.

The Better Business Bureau BBB of Charlotte is holding a shred event at the IKEA parking lot on 8300 IKEA Boulevard in Charlotte from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.At the Better Business Bureau you can bring up to four large boxes or bags per car. These events are rain or shine.

Why shred?Between 2010 and 2011, ID theft went up 13 percent in the United States.The Justice Department says that in 2010, seven percent of all U.S. households had at least one member of the family at or over the age of 12 who has been a victim of some kind of ID theft.

Experts say people share way too much personal information, the same personal information that sometimes is used as passwords to financial accounts.

Is your birthday on your Facebook or Twitter page? Names of kids and spouse? Anniversary date? Names of pets? Hometown? Current town? Cell phone and email? And is that page open for anyone to see?

What you share, and who you decide to share it with makes you somewhat vulnerable to having your identity stolen.

Experts say college students are especially vulnerable because they are often targeted by credit card companies.

Child ID theft is a growing problem as many parents don t think to monitor their children s credit, most because there isn t a credit history yet.

If a child s identity is stolen, experts say it can have devastating effects on future financial transactions like opening bank accounts, getting a student loan, or even getting a job.

In one case, a 16 year old girl reported fraud charges in her name that totaled $725,000, that according to Carnegie Melon s Cylab study.
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