Shred-it offers helpful tips to protect confidential information and prevent fraud and identity theftCHICAGO, Dec. 1, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Decluttering the work space and disposing of personal papers and files is hardly fun, however those who conquer this task will find themselves organized and ready to kick-start the New Year. As 2017 approaches, Shred-it is offering helpful tips to declutter your office and home in order prevent identity theft and information security breaches. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20161130/444181LOGO) "The benefits of decluttering go beyond simply organization," said Kevin Bretcher, District Manager, Shred-it, Chicago. "By securely and properly disposing of old files, papers, and electronic devices, you are preventing personal identity theft and business information security breaches, both of which can be a devastating matter to deal with personally, professionally and financially." Consider this - Chicago received 369 complaints of fraud and 149 complaints of identity theft per 100,000 people in 2015. That's a total of 35,300 fraud and 14,252 identity theft complaints in just one year, according to the Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book 1. One of the best ways to protect against fraud and identity theft is to declutter and destroy and dispose of unwanted items and information. At the same time, it can be overwhelming for many who feel they do not have the knowledge or resources available to manage this task. Most often, old work and personal documents are perceived as valuable information, prompting many individuals to stockpile and store it away. However, according to the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), individuals never use 80 percent of the papers they file away 2. Therefore, what better time than the end of a year to get rid of old devices, clear desks, and organize and remove paper clutter from the work space and home. Shred-it has outlined some helpful tips to properly secure and dispose of confidential information at work, at home, and while on the go.