As parents, there is little we wouldn’t do for our children. Their physical and emotional safety is our number one priority. One area parents may not know how to protect proactively is their children’s financial wellbeing. We may not think about it because our kids don’t need credit until they reach adulthood, but cyber thieves are ever-ready to take advantage of this fact. Why not protect your child’s identity now to save them many headaches later? Just like savvy businesses utilize document shredding and storage services to prevent thefts, you can take steps to safeguard your child and even yourself.
5 Ways to Protect Your Child’s Identity
You can never be over-cautious when it comes to your children’s financial and personal safety. Here are five ways you can give them a good start in their financial health:
- Freeze Your Child’s Credit Reports: This may seem a little odd at first. Little five-year-old Johnny shouldn’t have a credit report. However, someone may have attempted to open accounts under your son’s name. By checking with each of the three leading credit reporting agencies, you can verify if a credit report has been created fraudulently and then put a freeze on your child’s credit to prevent future attempts.
- Avoid Sharing Your Child’s Personal Information unless it’s Absolutely Necessary: If asked for this information, you can ask why it is needed and what it is used for. It’s unlikely that any credible organization needs your daughter’s social security number when she is still in elementary school!
- Limit the Amount of Personal Information Shared on Social Media: Those fun little quizzes you take sharing your favorite color and other personal details are a field of valuable data ripe for the taking. Limit how much information you share, and teach your older children to limit personal sharing. Don’t forget to talk with grandparents. They can unwittingly overshare, which can wreak havoc on their grandchildren in the future.
- Look for Red Flags: Has your 10-year-old started receiving bills and credit card statements? Have collection agencies started calling your child? Did you receive a notice indicating that your child’s name or Social Security number is listed as someone else’s dependent? These are signs that something is amiss with your child’s credit report and should be investigated.
- Keep Family Documents in a Safe Place: Be sure that Social Security cards, birth certificates, medical insurance cards, and any legal documents are stored in a secure place. When it’s time to purge any bank statements or other documents, consider utilizing the services of a professional shredding company for added security.
Take Records Security to the Next Level with Crown Information Management
You want to do right by your children. Add another level of security when you take steps to protect their identity. Remember that record purging is another step in financial management. Avoid throwing out mail and documents with pertinent information on them. Instead, consider using shredding services or records management services. Crown Information Management has the resources to aid you in ensuring your statements, bills, hard drives, and other pieces of information are properly destroyed. Give us a call today to see how we can help you protect your family members from identity thieves.
For secure, pest-free storage and easy and timely destruction of records, count on a SOC1 Level 2 Report,NAID AAA, and PCI Certified company. Call Crown Information Management at 800-979-9545 or contact us online to learn more about our document shredding services.