5 On Your Side

Parents can freeze a child's credit to help prevent ID theft

Posted January 20

Not many parents think about their child's credit, but it's a growing concern thanks to an increase in identity theft.

When children have their identities stolen, it could take years for families to find out they were victimized.

A new state law allows parents to protect against potential thefts by freezing their child's credit. It's for children under the age of 16, and it prevents an account from being opened or a loan being taken out in a minor's name.

Parents can request the freeze online through the three national credit bureaus.

There is a cost of up to $5 for each bureau, but security experts say the cost is nothing when compared to the cost of fixing the fallout when a child's identity is stolen.

When a child is old enough to establish credit, the freeze can be lifted

Adults can also freeze their credit through services such as Equifax, Transunion and Experian.


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