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My Son’s Identity Was Stolen – How To Prevent Identity Theft with KidSure

I’m serious.  My oldest son went to open a bank account when he turned 18 this year and they told him that someone else is using his social security number.  Come to find out not only has he (or she) been using my son’s social security number he has set up credit all over the place.  It isn’t good credit either, apparently this mystery person has a ton of unpaid bills including utilities.

The part that makes me particularly angry is that we don’t know who this person is because NO ONE will tell us!  I contacted the various credit agencies and they need us to verify information under the account, but all the information on the account is the thief’s  information (not my sons) so we couldn’t find out whats on his credit we only knew it was bad.  We tried the FTC and they were little to no help and the Social Security office wouldn’t help us unless we came in person.  It’s a nightmare trying to recuperate from child identity theft!  We still haven’t cleared it up and we aren’t sure we will ever be able to at this point.

How Identity Theft Happens

I’m really not sure how they got my son’s social security number.  He didn’t even know his number until he turned 18 and the only places I ever shared it with were his doctors (which I will NEVER do again), government agencies that required it (IRS), and his father.  I do know that many companies are not as careful as they should be when it comes to handling SSNs and many times we take it for granted as well when disposing of papers with our SSNs.  Below are a couple other places people get SSNs from:

  • Scams where thieves pose as a business or bank official on the phone and ask for your credit card information.
  • Old-fashioned pickpocketing, where thieves steal your credit cards and either use them or sell them to other criminals.
  • Card readers installed by thieves at everyday locations, such as cash machines and supermarket checkout lanes, to steal your information.
  • Data breaches where your information is accidentally exposed by companies you should be able to trust. (ITAC®, the Identity Theft Assistance Center, recorded 662 breaches last year.)
  • Visit Identity Guard for more information.

KidSure

As part of a ambassadorship I am testing out Identity Guard/KidSure products and services.  I have enrolled in the KidSure child identity protection service to ensure that what happened to my oldest son will NOT happen to my youngest son.  Through this service I get:
  • Ongoing visibility into potential exposure of your child’s personal data
  • A comprehensive “Digital Footprint” report showing detected data
  • Alerts to certain kinds of activity detected
I love that I get email alerts when there is any activity on my son’s account.  I was very impressed with their security as well because I had to verify all my information as the adult parent of the child.  I can’t wait to learn more about the company over the next few months and share what I learn with you!

Do you know anyone who has had their identity stolen?
Disclosure: This service was provided to me for review at no charge. In addition I received monetary compensation. All opinions are my own.
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Comments

  1. Ok, I have experience with this very thing. My husband’s identity was stolen in 2000. We found out about it the end of January, 2001 when he received a W-2 from a company he never worked for. But prior to that, the week of Thanksgiving, 2000, his ATM Visa Debit card number was stolen and used online to purchase several things including porn. We did not have a computer at that time.

    I only found out about the monetary theft when I tried to get money out of the bank and there was none. We still don’t know if the person who used his card number is the same one who worked under his social security number.

    I will tell you that this theft will haunt your son for years to come. It’s haunted us for almost twelve years. It’s messed up our taxes and no matter how many times we tell the IRS or the state that my husband never worked for that company or how much proof we show, they still try to come after us for unpaid taxes.

    You can order your son’s credit reports online. They will have the reported addresses of the thief on them and you can use that to file reports and charges against him/her. You will need to put a freeze on his credit with all three bureaus and you can get a new social security number issued just by showing proof to the SS Agency of the identity theft. I’ve been dealing with this for years. It’s not easy and it is very frustrating, but I can help you if need it. Navigating all the red tape the victim has to go through is daunting and you will have to be vigilant about monitoring everything for the foreseeable future. Your son’s best bet is to get a new SSN. He should not have to start his adulthood with bad credit he’s not responsible for hanging over his head.

  2. Mary Ambrosino
    Twitter:
    says:

    That is really sound advice and he should get a new SS number so at least he will get credit for his work and the scammer won’t.

  3. Here are some tips to avoid the theft. Tear up envelopes with your address, tear up bills with your account number, don’t stay online with your bank account or credit card window open, close your browser
    Gwendolyn recently posted..how to improve eyesight naturallyMy Profile

  4. To prevent yourself from identity theft, you need to ensure certain things like never share your personal details online, monitor your credit card statements, report stolen identity cards, Hope this kind of tips help a lot to some other people..
    Tisha recently posted..Health AdviceMy Profile

  5. Sorry to hear about the sad news. We have to make sure that our identification is always secured and especially our credit card numbers and ATM card numbers. We should refrain it from putting those important numbers online or even in our own wallet. always secure a pin code.
    Javen21 recently posted..More Home Security TipsMy Profile

  6. I have to admit this is a good advice that you have shared to protect our child’s identity. you are telling us that we must have an social security number to avoid theft like this.
    Kate Brown Wilson recently posted..חג פוריםMy Profile

  7. Thanks for providing us a very useful information to protect our children and to prevent their identity to be stole. And i will definitely follow all the information you have shared with to avoid this kind of problem.
    karla recently posted..Happy New Year To All Of You And Hope You Like The Aquarium Fish Photos Here …My Profile

  8. Oftentimes we overlook the easiest way for a thief to get personal data is through our trash. Never stuff your letter envelopes, post cards, any mail that has your personal data on your waste basket, unless you have shredded these. I hope this helps to make us more conscious and be alert against the threat of identity theft.
    Amy Turner recently posted..Student Credit Card Deals Can Make Spring Break More AffordableMy Profile

  9. Hey Lisa,

    Identity theft is the fastest growing crime. It can happen to anyone, we can’t assume its not going to happen to us and go about our life. We actually need to make some proactive efforts to protect ourselves from such crimes. The most important ones include shredding any sensitive documents before putting them in trash and avoiding sharing SSN unless absolutely necessary.

    Your story is very tragic, but thankfully you can get your son new SSN as he’s just starting out. It can get really difficult for a lot other people. Services like KidSure also can help to protect us from great trauma that can result from such possible thefts.
    Sarah Reece recently posted..HostmonsterMy Profile

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