We try to protect our identities as much as we can - using secure Wi-Fi, shredding personal mail, etc. But do we forget the kids in all this?
A recent study from Carnegie Mellon says that 10.2 percent of children under age 18 have had their Social Security numbers stolen. That's alarmingly higher than the adult rate of 0.2 percent.
Crooks are targeting children because the probability of discovering the theft is so low. Children rarely use their Social Security number and parents usually do not monitor the child’s identity.
Thieves can use a child’s identity to open new lines of credit or apply for government benefits. This identity theft can have a devastating impact on a young person’s credit score.
How can you know if somebody's using your child's or grandchild's Social Security number? Try getting a free credit report. Get one for yourself, too.