BBB: How to keep your kids safe from identity theft



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Posted on October 11, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Updated Thursday, Oct 11 at 2:55 PM

AUSTIN -- The Better Business Bureau warns that children are heavily targeted by identity thieves, and has released tips to help parents keep their kids safe.

The BBB says a new study conducted by Carnegie Mellon University Cylab, a cybersecurity research center, states that kids were the target of identity thieves 51 times more frequently than adults.

It is believed that thieves are finding unused social security numbers, attaching a different name and birthday to it, then using it to get credit cards or loans, among other things.

Children usually don't use their social security cards until they are adults, making them easy targets.

The BBB has released tips to help parents protect their child's identity:

  • Keep your child's personal information in a safe place. Only give their Social Security number away to those you trust.
  • As soon as you give away any personal information about your child, you should monitor their credit report. You can have one free credit report a year from each agency. Click here for more information.
  • Some thieves can use viruses to search computers or documents for your child's information. Keep anti-virus software on your computer up-to-date.
  • Shred papers which have your child's personal information on them. Delete important computer files which may contain their information.

The BBB says it will hold Shred Day events Oct. 20 and Oct. 27 throughout Texas. For more information click here.