NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Child identity theft afflicts some 1 in 40 families (2.5%), and if child identity fraud isn’t detected until after a child turns 18, it can cause big problems in his life down the road. What are the signs of child identity theft? What do you do if you think your children have become victims?
Why Steal a Child’s Identity?
A lot of people aren’t sure why their children would be victims of identity fraud. However, Jack Tomarchio, partner and co-chair of Buchanan, Ingersoll and Rooney’s cybersecurity and data protection group and a former Deputy Undersecretary with the Department of Homeland Security says that it’s simple.
“Their credit history is totally pristine and pure,” he says.
What’s more, because no one generally checks his kid’s credit report, people don’t know that the identity has been compromised until they get a huge credit card bill in their infant’s name.
“If I got any kind of letter to my child indicating creditworthiness, I would start looking,” Tomarchio says.
Red Flags Indicating a Compromised Identity
Still, Mike Sullivan of Take Charge America urges people to be calm and collected when it comes to child identity theft.
“Even if it is stolen, it’s not going to do much damage if the child is under 16,” he says.
What’s more, Sullivan points out that you have lots of time to fix it before it will begin impacting your child’s life in any way.
So what are some of the red flags you’re looking for when it comes to your child’s identity being stolen?