Employees' personal information left in dumpster - New York News

Employees' personal information left in dumpster

Posted: Updated:
PHOENIX -

Identity theft is a big problem in this country. Thousands of people have to spend hundreds of dollars every year to clear their financial records of damage caused by hackers or dumpster divers.

It doesn't help when your employer makes it easy for them.

Former employees of one valley restaurant weren't happy to learn they had a very close call.

"This trash was so full that you could see the employee records right on top right here," says Roger Quinte III.

Roger Quinte was cleaning out his storage shed at Extra Space Storage on north 32nd Street when he found files of what appeared to be employee records sitting on top of a full dumpster.

"Opened it up and sure enough it had employees' personal information in it for a company here in town."

That company turned out to be the Bombay Spice Company, a nearby restaurant.

The documents were personnel files from the restaurant -- application forms, photos of drivers' licenses and birth certificates from what appeared to be former employees.

Quinte called us, and we showed the files to Data Doctors founder Ken Colburn, an expert on identity theft.

"This is unbelievable," says Colburn.

Colburn looked through dozens of employee folders and he didn't like what he saw.

"The ability to completely take over their lives electronically is sitting right here. We have home addresses social security numbers date of birth phone numbers everything."

Colburn told us everything an identity thief would need was there to open new credit card accounts, access e-mails, even file false IRS tax refunds.

It was all right there in that stack of papers, employee records from Bombay Spice Company.

"With a couple of clicks of the mouse and a couple of submissions you could be basically taking over anybody in this piles' identity."

We tracked down one former Bombay Spice employee. We found Alexandra's cell phone number in her discarded personnel file. She wasn't happy about it.

"Oh my gosh all the W-4 forms I filled out, my social security… especially, it was just found in a dumpster some stranger picked it up."

The files even included her high school record.

"Now I want to take all of my files with me when I quit a job," says Alexandra.

The restaurant owner declined our requests for on camera interview. He did give us a written statement which said in part: "Employee records are kept confidential and retained, and when no longer necessary and current are destroyed by shredding. The cooperation of Fox News is appreciated and Bombay Spice thanks you for bringing this matter to its attention."

Bombay Spice Company did say they were thrown out by mistake, and it requested the records be returned. We handed them over to a courier hired by the restaurant's attorney.

"Make sure they destroy their records and not allow such information to be released to the general public," says Quinte.

Bombay Spice Company did tell us they never intended for the documents to be removed from their storage facility, and promised they would be kept secured.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Suffolk County jail warden is highest-paid muni worker in NY

    Suffolk County jail warden is highest-paid muni worker in NY

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:48 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:48:14 GMT
    New York State NewsNew York State News
    The Empire Center for Public Policy reports 1,803 local government employees outside of New York City have been paid more than Gov. Andrew Cuomo's $179,000 salary in the past year. The report from the fiscally conservative group for the year ending March 31 shows 47 of the 50 highest-paid municipal employees working for police departments or sheriff's offices and each taking home more than $250,000.
    The Empire Center for Public Policy reports 1,803 local government employees outside of New York City have been paid more than Gov. Andrew Cuomo's $179,000 salary in the past year. The report from the fiscally conservative group for the year ending March 31 shows 47 of the 50 highest-paid municipal employees working for police departments or sheriff's offices and each taking home more than $250,000.
  • Manhattan nursery school's sanitizing machine keeps air clean

    Manhattan nursery school's sanitizing machine keeps air clean

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:47 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:47:17 GMT
    All of us feel the same way about "cooties": Eww. At the Goddard School on the Upper West Side, a high-tech machine is keeping "cooties" out of the classroom. "This is the latest and then most effective sanitization method available today," says Bill Swan, the owner of the Goddard School. He purchased the ZONO Sanitech for his school about six months ago. The machine is the size of a double refrigerator and uses oxygen to kill viruses and bacteria.
    All of us feel the same way about "cooties": Eww. At the Goddard School on the Upper West Side, a high-tech machine is keeping "cooties" out of the classroom. "This is the latest and then most effective sanitization method available today," says Bill Swan, the owner of the Goddard School. He purchased the ZONO Sanitech for his school about six months ago. The machine is the size of a double refrigerator and uses oxygen to kill viruses and bacteria.
  • NYC's pickup basketball games moving indoors

    NYC's pickup basketball games moving indoors

    Thursday, July 24 2014 5:54 PM EDT2014-07-24 21:54:18 GMT
    Believe it or not this, some say New York's outdoor basketball courts are a dying entity. Even Rucker Park in Harlem -- where Dr. J and countless others honed their skills -- used to be standing room only all times of the day. Now there's plenty of room to stand on most days.Basketball programs like one at Chelsea Piers are gaining popularity. That means the place to hoop it up for many appears to be indoors.
    Believe it or not this, some say New York's outdoor basketball courts are a dying entity. Even Rucker Park in Harlem -- where Dr. J and countless others honed their skills -- used to be standing room only all times of the day. Now there's plenty of room to stand on most days.Basketball programs like one at Chelsea Piers are gaining popularity. That means the place to hoop it up for many appears to be indoors.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices