Did you know that last year more than one million children in the U.S. were victims of identity theft? We often think of this as an adult problem, but children are frequently targets for identity theft as it’s unlikely to be noticed for years (when the now-grown-up child applies for credit themselves). For less than the price of a morning coffee, a person could buy your child’s Social Security number and use it to build a fake credit file—allowing them to take out loans and credit cards in your child’s name.
Thanks to a new law, however, parents and guardians can now protect their children (under 16) from becoming victims. By establishing a credit file at each of the three national credit reporting agencies and then freezing the credit, you can help safeguard your child’s financial future.
You’ll need to contact each of the credit reporting agencies to completely freeze your child’s credit:
The freeze can then be lifted when your child is ready to apply for credit themselves (save the PINs for each credit agency someplace safe).
Have a story about your experience setting up a credit/security freeze for your child? Please share it with us!