National Child Identity Theft Awareness Day – Protecting your child’s most important assets should be a top priority.
As we head into another school year and children are back in the classroom, it’s important to talk about the security issues that also plague our children. On September 1 we raise awareness of the issues of child identity theft. This day is observed every September in hopes that parents and guardians understand and can spot potential harm before they become a victim.
There are so many ways today that a child can become part of an identity theft breach. It could be physical documents being stolen from a wallet or purse – or it can be part of a data breach or online scam where access to the information was illicitly given.
National Child Identity Theft Awareness Day is the perfect time to remind parents that protecting their child’s most important asset should be a top priority.
We are sharing some tips with you on how to keep your child safe from identity theft on the blog today. The goal is to teach you more about how this crime affects children and what you can do to protect your own kids from it.
What is child identity theft?
Child identity theft begins with stealing personal information about your child and using that data (your child’s name, date of birth, social security number) to open credit card accounts or apply for loans in their name. These are some of the most talked about thefts that occur, but your child’s name could also be used for someone to get a job or to get financial aid for college- there are so many ways thieves are using sensitive information today and often times with children, the problem isn’t spotted until years down the line when it comes time for them to try and get a legitimate loan for college or to buy a car.
Because child identity theft is a crime that can have a lasting impact on your child’s life, it’s important to spread awareness about this issue on National Child Identity Theft Awareness Day.
Here are some of the ways you can tell if your child has been a victim of identity theft and some tips for protecting them.
A major red flag is if you spot unusual activity on your child’s credit report. Yes – you should also check their credit report regularly as you do yours. Things like credit cards they didn’t open or bank accounts they didn’t create can be a sure sign that someone has stolen their personal information.
Professional paper shredding services play a key role in destroying data so it doesn’t get in the wrong hands when you are ready to toss it.
Act quickly when you spot this to stop the fraud as soon as possible. If you notice something suspicious on their credit reports or in any other records related to your child’s identity (like a tax return sent to them), contact the authorities and credit reporting agencies immediately so they can put a freeze. This means no one can open any new accounts under their name.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:
- What are the Warning Signs of Identity Theft?
- What Are Identity Monitoring Services and Do You Need Them?
- Identity Fraud vs. Identity Theft: Know the Difference