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How to Protect your Kids from Identity Theft

by Kurt Knutsson

Did you know that kids are more likely to be victims of identity theft than grown ups?

Facts:

  • study by Carnegie Mellon University’s CyLab saying children are 51 times more likely to be a victim of identity theft than adults
  • approximately 30% of child identity theft is done by the child’s own family members
  • parents should make sure any records containing kid’s personal info such as ss # be locked away & secure
  • many school forms require personal info about your child, if not secured i.d. theft can happen
  • The Family Educational Rights Privacy Act (FERPA) protects the privacy of student records & gives parents right to opt out of sharing contact information with third parties
  • 22 states allow parents, legal guardians or other reps of minors to put security freeze on minor’s credit report

How Does a child’s ID get stolen?

  • mishandling of student records
  • student directories that include too much info such as home address, full name, and date of birth
  • adults have options to freeze their credit reports & get a restricted pin for accessing the report rendering them useless to crooks without knowing pin code
  • minors usually don’t have a credit report, except in states where you now can freeze until it’s time for legit use

How can you protect your kids from ID theft?

  • become familiar with FERPA (Family Educational Rights Privacy Act) and contact a lawyer (click here to keep reading) if required
  • protect student records
  • opt out from sharing records to third parties
  • lock away your children’s important records at home from prying eyes especially extended family



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