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The Hidden Cost Of Identity Theft Against Children

Aug 21, 2008
Identity theft against children is the fastest growing sector in reported identity theft complaints, according to the Federal Trade Commission. And often times parents cannot be trusted to protect their children because the majority of child identity thefts are family members.

Children need to be protected by greedy or misled relatives, and the government must offer them aid. Likewise, corporate financial institutions that have offered forgiveness to adult identity theft victims must develop the same sympathies for child identity theft victims.

Fastest Growing Segment Of Complaints Of Identity Theft

In just two years time, the The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) discovered that the incident of complaints of child identity theft rose from 2% of the total reports to 4%. This is the fastest growing category of identity theft complaints, and is projected to continue in this trend. Many of these crimes were committed years before, and are only noticed as individuals become more aware and begin to look deeper into their children's credit reports.

The FTC estimates that a half of a million children fall victim to identity theft each year, however only about ten- or fifteen thousand are reported annually. This statistic leads the FTC to believe that not enough of the crimes are being noticed quickly enough. The reason behind this is often that the people responsible for protecting their child's identity until they are old enough to do it for themselves are often the very same individuals stealing the child's identity.

Majority Of Child Identity Thefts Committed By Family Members

Close family members or parents are at the root of more that 50% of complaints of identity theft against a child. Identities were usually stolen in times of great need, to pay for utilities, food, or prevent the loss of a vehicle.

A ruined credit report can be debilitating for a child five or ten years down the road, but parents typically the parents justify their criminal behavior by claiming it was for the best of the child at the time. It is not usually the intention of the parent to permanently damage their child's credit history.
About the Author
Concerned about identity theft and other types of internet threats? Find out how to set up solid internet security so you don't get taken on the net. Get more tips and information at http://www.securitymanor.com
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