Like I said, shredding papers is one of the ways in which people protect their privacy.
This is the primary importance of shredding papers and owning a shredder in your home. Paper documents which contain sensitive information, like credit card bills, bank statements, important civic documents, account information, letters, etc., can easily be found by people who go through your trash and then misused against you in numerous ways.
One way of preventing this (and, perhaps, the only way to prevent it) is to shred all the papers with sensitive information in such a way that it cannot be reassembled to reveal what is written or printed on it.
Identity thefts are one of the most developed fraud branches out there. Taking one’s identity via personal documents or credit card information leaves that person vulnerable to a wide variety of problems. It is a multi-billion industry that is usually used to fund organized crime through the wallets of unsuspecting people.
The thing that is the primary requirement for committing identity theft is information. This information can come from various places: through unsecured Internet transactions, various scams (both online and offline), and even by going through one’s rubbish. Only one or two pieces of information can be enough to completely take over someone’s identity and commit various actions in that person’s name.
The problem is that when someone takes another’s identity, chances are really low that the actions done will be legal or beneficial to that person or people around him.