Last Updated on by SCARS Editorial Team

RSN™ Special Report: Cybercriminals Targeting Your Children’s Identities

Your Child’s Identity Is Valuable To Cybercriminals

There are a lot of reasons why a child’s identity and ID information is target #1 for some cybercriminals

Unfortunately, a child’s personal information is particularly susceptible to criminals looking to steal an identity.

Most often, child identity theftIdentity Theft Identity theft is when someone uses another person's personal identifying information, without their permission, to commit fraud or other crimes. In both the U.K. and the United States it is the theft of personally identifiable information. Identity theft deliberately uses someone else's identity as a method to gain financial advantages or obtain credit and other benefits, and perhaps to cause other person's loss. The person whose identity has been stolen may suffer adverse consequences, especially if they are falsely held responsible for the perpetrator's actions. Personally identifiable information generally includes a person's name, date of birth, social security number, driver's license number, bank account or credit card numbers, PINs, electronic signatures, fingerprints, passwords, or any other information that can be used to access a person's financial resources. starts with a stolen Social Security number, however, it can also start with their parent being romance scammed.

This highly-valuable piece of information can then be used or sold on the black market. It’s particularly attractive because a child’s SSN has little to no history, allowing an identity thief to exploit the information, often going unnoticed for many years.

As reported in a study by Carnegie Mellon University, children were 51 times more likely than adults to be victims of identity theft and, most often, the culprit is someone close to the child, such as a parent, guardian, or other relatives who would have access to sensitive information. Additionally, a child’s Social Security number can also be compromised when it’s shared with third parties, such as schools or medical facilities, where copies of sensitive information could be lost, stolen, or hacked.

When used correctly, the technology we rely on does a great job keeping our private data and information protected. Although nothing can entirely prevent identity theft, a secure device and a little awareness can go a long way.

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What Makes Your Child’S Digital Identity Vulnerable?

Outdated security software and device operating systems: Although updates can be annoying, they are essential to ensure your device is functioning correctly. They keep your information and device defended against the newest forms of cyber-attacks, and patchPatch A software program update that corrects known bugs or problems, or adds new features to a software program already installed on your computer. critical vulnerabilities in a device’s operating system or software.

  • Unsecured Wi-Fi networks and website scamsScams A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost.: Free public Wi-Fi networks may be monitored by cybercriminals while you’re using them. Another common strategy for individuals looking to steal your information is launching fake websites or breaching secure websites to access passwords. Using network and device vulnerabilities such as those previously mentioned, cybercriminals target user information in order to steal highly-sensitive personal data, some of which include device passwords, online accounts, financial information, saved documents, and personal records.
  • Poor password security: We rely on our passwords often and, therefore, tend to make them easy to remember. However, as mentioned above, it’s possible to have your passwords breached, stolen, or compromised at any moment. Remember, if a password has been breached, it’s accessible on the dark webDark Web This is a sub-level of the internet that normal search engines and everyday browsers cannot access. It’s an encrypted network that contains websites – both legal and illegal – that remain hidden from plain sight..
  • Viruses, malware