Mark Lipinski of Long Valley, NJ, had a horrifying experience at his local office supply store on Monday.
Lipinski is an internationally known quilt teacher, and fabric designer, and former Executive Editor of Quilter's Home magazine. A veteran Emmy Award nominated and Cable Ace Award winning talk show producer, programming and development executive, he worked on shows such as Oprah, The View, The Joan River's Show, Sally Jessy Raphael, Attitudes and Ricki Lake.
Lipinski says he went to his local office supply store to make photocopies from his flash drive for an upcoming class. After he got home, he saw that other information had been imported onto his flash drive - files which were not his. And this was not just any information, he says they included: "lawyer notes, subpoenas, insurance forms, Social Security numbers, case files, etc.,--- file after file, was somehow transferred/uploaded to my Flash Drive (and I was the only customer at the copy center). I'm in shock..."
Identity theft handed out on a silver platter.
Lipinski posted a screen shot on his Facebook page which showed 20 files, and noted that these were "just a small portion of the files that are NOT mine."
"Every office has a photocopier that scans, duplicates and emails everything from company fliers and schedules to pay stubs and private records. But what you may not know is that the copier could be storing each one of those documents.
"Just as computers have internal hard drives that store documents and information, digital photocopiers may contain hard drives, as well. Think of copy machines in the same light as smartphones, says Kevin Cross, a partner at Lippes Mathias Wexler Friedman LLP. And if you're involved in any litigation, he says, attorneys may look to your copier as a source of information."
The article also suggests, "...be wary of where those photocopier hard drives end up when an aging machine is moved out of the office."