Better Business Bureau Offers Tips On Protecting Child Identities
UNDATED -- It's not a thought many of us want to think about...our child's identity stolen before they even have a chance to obtain credit. But, that's what's happening in a new, disturbing trend. Here's what to watch out for and what to do if our children's identities are stolen.
The Minnesota Better Business Bureau says online scammers look for inactive social security numbers they can take and sell to people looking for fake credit. It's a crime that's on the rise.
The first thing you should do is be aware on how to obtain your child's credit report. You must use one of the three credit reporting agencies. A good place to start is Trans Union. If there is no report, your child is likely in the clear. If there is a report, follow-up with Experian and Equifax.
Look for signs of trouble like your child receiving pre-approved credit offers or calls from collection agencies.
If you suspect your child might be a victim, contact all three credit bureaus, request a report and put a credit freeze on immediately.
The Better Business Bureau says every parent should check their child's credit report on their 16th birthday so you have time before they turn 18 to correct errors. But, it's not a good idea to check too often as it lowers credit scores further.
For more information, log on to the the Better Business Bureau website.