Securing your family does not only mean that you have to keep their health–emotional and physical–on top of your priority but you should also secure them from identity theft, especially your kids. You may not be aware of it but your kids are in serious danger of identity theft. With enough diligence in monitoring your child’s credit bureau files, then you can seriously save them and yourself from any superfluous, pricey and time-consuming transactions just to get back what the identity theft criminals took from you.
For this reason, you should seriously protect your child from identity theft. Children identity theft is now a very big problem and in the 9 million identity theft victims every year, 5% or a whopping 450,000 of these victims are children. It may sound like a very unnerving fact but it’s entirely true.
Who do kids have credit reports anyway? They are very simple beings whose most complicated problem would probably be picking the next color from the box of crayons. The reason that they have credit scores is because they have social security numbers. This piece of sensitive information is usually assigned at birth and they are often used for medical records, school records, sports records and other “records” that the child might incur in the course of their lives.
Most identity theft criminals target children’s social security numbers because this is the key that will unlock other pertinent information about the child. As soon as the criminal gets hold of enough personal information, then they can open new bank accounts and credit cards using the child’s name, take on huge loans, or even apply for new cell phone accounts using the child’s name. All they need is enough information to assume the child’s identity.
Where can criminals your child’s information?
There are a lot of locations where identity theft criminals can access your child’s personal information. They can get it from the credit bureau, from the school records or any other agencies or institutions that keep your child’s data. Teenagers who have ever applied for a department store credit card or car loan can also have a credit bureau file.
How can identity theft affect my child?
There are a lot of things that an identity theft can do as soon as they have your child’s personal data. They can open and abuse financial accounts like bank and credit accounts using your child’s name. Such abuses will be reflected to the child’s credit history maintained by the credit bureaus and it can have a lot of impact on your child’s life and future.
For instance, if by the time your child wants to open his or her own bank account, he or she will be denied since his or her credit report will show that your child has already opened multiple accounts that have been misused. Your child can also be turned down for jobs-part time or summer jobs-because most employers perform a background check and the first information that they check is the credit report. Other than that, you child will also have a hard time getting accepted into a college, the worst, there can be arrest warrants served under your child’s name even if your child hasn’t done anything to deserve it.