Elections and Government Services Administrative Rules of Montana Business Services Notary and Certification Records and Information Management

September 18, 2012

Contact: Terri McCoy, 406-444-2807

McCulloch Launches Montana Business Identity Theft Resource Center;
Announces “Shred-a-Thon” Events for Public to Safely Dispose of Documents

HELENA, MT – An estimated 9 million Americans have their personal identities stolen each year. While the statistic is staggering, recent state reports suggest that another type of victim is emerging. Identity thieves are increasingly targeting businesses, and Secretary of State Linda McCulloch is arming Montanans with information to keep their records safe.

“I’m committed to helping every business in Montana succeed,” McCulloch said. “The good news is that businesses can fight back against identity theft by adding or changing a few key practices for protecting their private information.”

The Montana Secretary of State’s Office Business Identity Theft Resource Center is an online tool that provides businesses tips for preventing, detecting and recovering from identity and data theft. Among other things, the public site features printable resources, pertinent contact information, and links to expert government advice.

“One of the most common examples of business identity theft is the unauthorized alteration of business records,” McCulloch said. “Businesses should not only routinely check the accuracy of the records filed with our office, but also ensure that all unnecessary personal information is left off documents that are made available to the public.”

Victims of personal or business identity theft should immediately file a report with a private attorney, local law enforcement and credit reporting agencies. Businesses should also correct any information that is inaccurately filed with the Montana Secretary of State by filling out and returning the appropriate business form. Forms are available on the SOS website.

“Identity theft is a serious and costly crime,” McCulloch said. “This sitemakes it easier for businesses to protect themselves, their employees and their customers from potential threats.”

SHRED-A-THONS Provide Safe Disposal of Documents!
Business ID Theft ~ Prevention, Detection, RecoveryWe’re teaming with the Montana Attorney General’s Office, the Better Business Bureau, and Montana Records Management to help the public safely dispose of personal and business documents. Attend a Shred-A-Thon and shred up to two boxes of documents for FREE.

Helena - Thursday, September 27
YMCA Parking Lot, 12:00 – 1:30 p.m.

Billings - Wednesday, October 3
Wal-Mart Parking Lot (King Ave W.), 12:00 – 1:30 p.m.