It is terrible to think that identity thieves could steal your child’s personal information. However, data belonging to young children is highly prized by fraudsters. Typically, no one thinks to check a kid’s credit. In fact, most Illinois minors don’t even have credit reports. This means that identity thieves can often use a child’s Social Security number and other information for years before anyone discovers the crime. The identity theft is only revealed when the child is old enough to apply for a credit card or a car loan. However, for concerned Illinois parents, there are ways to tell if your child is an identity theft victim before they turn 18.
The Best Way for Illinois Parents to Check Whether or Not their Child is a Victim of Identity Theft
Statistics reveal that, on average, about 140,000 minors – in Illinois and throughout the country – have their identities stolen every year. This seems like a relatively small number, especially in the wake of the recent Equifax data breach that exposed personal information belonging to 143 million U. S. consumers. Yet, the threat is real enough to cause concern for Illinois parents.
The easiest way to check the security of your child’s identity is to check their credit reports (if they have them). Because checking a minor’s credit report involves extra security measures, you cannot request online versions of these documents on www.annualcreditreport.com. Instead, you must write a letter to each of three major credit bureaus – TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian.
In your written requests to the credit bureaus, explain why you want to check on the status of your child’s credit report. Along with the letters, you should include copies of the following documents: Your driver’s license, your son or daughter’s birth certificate, their Social Security card. You should also attach a copy of a recent utility bill as proof of your current address.
After writing away to the credit bureaus, most Illinois parents receive notification that their child has no credit report. This is good news because it means that no one has opened fraudulent accounts in their name. On the other hand, if your child has a credit report, you will receive a copy of it in the mail.
Other Signs that Indicate an Illinois Child is an Identity Theft Victim
In addition to checking for credit reports, there are other ways to spot the identity theft of an Illinois minor in your home. In fact, if any of these things happen, you should investigate the matter further.
- A debt collector calls your home and asks to speak with your child.
- Pre-approved credit card offers, addressed to your child, come in the mail.
- Your 16-year-old is denied a driver’s license because it appears that they already have one. Or, there are accumulated citations associated with their name.
If you do find that your son or daughter is the victim of identity theft, file a police report. Then, you should place freezes on their credit reports. This will prevent additional fraudulent activity until everything is resolved.
Free Credit Repair for Illinois Parents Who are Victims of Identity Theft
Your chances of becoming an identity theft victim are far greater than your child’s. Because of this, you should keep close tabs on your own credit reports. This is especially important in the wake of the Equifax data breach.
If, while looking through your credit reports, you come across suspicious items, first notify the police, then call Credit Repair Lawyers of America in Illinois. When you call our firm, and experienced credit attorney will fix your credit reports for free.
Don’t identity theft damage on your credit reports bring your credit score down. At Credit Repair Lawyers of America, we’ve been cleaning up credit reports for consumers since 2008 for free. How do we do it? All of our fees come from the defendants in settled cases. This is why our clients pay nothing for the work we do.
Let’s start the conversation about what we can do for your credit. Set up your free consultation today by calling Attorney Gary Nitzkin at (773) 360-0665 or sending him a message through our contact page.
For more information about Free Credit Repair After Identity Theft, please visit https://www.creditrepairlawyersam.com/fixing-identity-theft/.