One Family Learned The Hard Way That Identity Theft Isn't Just For Adults

Photo: Flickr via hornbeck

The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services says a woman tried to apply for a job using a stolen Social Security Number that belonged to a 10-year-old, reports KETV. After Makena Rung’s family’s SUV was broken into, Rung’s Medicaid card, which contains her social security number, was reported missing.

A few weeks later, HHS informed the family that a restaurant worker had used Rung’s social security number to apply for a job. 

So far, the woman suspected of stealing Rung’s social security number has not been arrested or charged with anything, according to KETV.

It may be hard to believe, but children like Rung are 51 times more likely to have their identity stolen than their parents, according Carnegie Mellon University researchers. 

Kids are easy targets because parents typically don’t monitor their personal information, which gives thieves ample time to do their worst. 

While spending cash on child-sized credit monitoring plans might not be worth your while, take these simple tips from Carnegie Mellon’s research team: 

Watch their mail: If your child starts to receive unsolicited financial offers like pre-approved credit cards this could be an indicator that their identity has been stolen.

Check their report every few years: Parents can check their child’s credit report every few years. If anything fishy turns up, ask for reports from all three major credit bureaus. Find additional information from the FTC’s Identity Theft Resource centre

Free protection: Websites like AllClear ID will scan all credit reports associated with your child’s social security number to help detect fraud, for no charge.

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