In honor of National Protect Your Identity Week, personal finance blogger Stephanie at Poorer Than You has cobbled together a guide on how to shred your documents if you’re too cheap to go out and buy a paper-shredder.
She recommends one that cross-cuts in order to prevent someone who really, really wants your identity from taping together strips of your old tax returns. The best shredder of all, she says, is fire — and Beavis would agree — which she used to use when her house was heated by a wood stove.
There are ways to get access to shredders other than breaking down and buying one, which according to Stephanie should be the last resort for a creative freeloader. You can look for free ones on Craigslist, borrow use from a shred-happy friend, or wait for a shredding party, she writes:
Shredding Events: Keep your sensitive papers for shredding in a secure place (away from the prying eyes of roommates and dubious guests-of-roommates), and find out when there’s going to be a free, public shredding event in your area to take it all to. Your best friend in finding one of these events is Google! Search for “[your city] shredding event” and see what comes up. You can also check the Shred-It website to see if that particular company is sponsoring an event near you soon.
If all else fails, of course, buy a shredder. After all, they’re only $30.
Get a Cross-Cut Paper Shredder [National Protect Your Identity Week] [Poorer Than You]