Parents with children older than one year must file a Social Security Number for their children to qualify for tax deduction. However, with the prevalence of child identity theft, parents must be more cautious to protect their children from this crime.
What is Child ID Theft?
Yes, identity thieves may also steal your child’s Social Security Number and use it to commit fraudulent transactions. In 2005, the Federal Trade Commission has received complaints from people below 18 years old who have been victims of ID theft. Even children can suffer from bad credit history before they are old enough to apply for their own credit.
Protect Your Child from ID Theft
Parents have the responsibility to protect their kids from child ID theft. Consider the following advice:
1. Store your child’s documents in a safe place. Birth certificate, SSN, trust funds, and other documents associated with your child’s identity must be filed in safe place.
2. Be cautious when providing your child’s SSN. When dealing with merchants and hospitals, parents may be asked for their child’s SSN. Before giving away this significant detail, parents must be aware how the information will be used. As much as possible, ask if you can provide another detail in place of the SSN.
3. Don’t carry your child’s Social Security Card with you. Do not carry your child’s Social Security ID in your wallet!
4. Check your child’s credit report regularly. Monitor your child’s credit report score at least once a year by ordering a copy of the report from each of the three major credit bureaus-Experian, Equifax,TransUnion.
5. Check your child’s Social Security Record. Make sure that no one else is using your child’s SSN for by calling 1-800-772-1213 or visiting www.ssa.gov/online/ssa-7004.html.
6. Do not use your child’s SSN for your own purpose. Some guardians or parents who suffer from bad credit history may try to open an account under their child’s name. Doing so puts your child’s credit history at risk especially if you fail to keep up with your payments.
7. Teach your kids about identity theft. Teach your children about the importance of guarding their personal Identity. Make sure that they do not give away personal information to anyone especially when using the internet. Identity thieves may disguise themselves as friends and steal information from unsuspecting kids at chat rooms and and social networking sites.
About the Author:
Suzy Vanstrusen is a credit analyst and a writer on the website EZCreditRepairSolutions.com. She has been providing consumers with tips and wise information about credit repair as well as helping you out more with your bad credit loans. Copyright © 2010