For many Moms and Dads, the highlight of summer vacation during their childhood involved trips to sleepaway camp. Whether they spent their nights in cabins or at tents in the woods, by a lake or down by the ocean, these outings were character building events that helped create the successful adults that many parents are today.
If you went to summer camp as a kid and had a great experience, odds are you’ll be inclined to send your kids away for a few weeks this season. However, while sunscreen and insect repellent are still integral parts of any campers trip, there are new dangers associated with shipping out for the season other than UV rays and mosquitoes.
Every year millions are victims of this crime
Child identity theft is one of the fastest growing demographics when it comes to personal fraud, according to the Federal Trade Commission, and when you send your kid off to camp this summer, you could be making them vulnerable to the crime.
Signing a child up for summer camp usually involves providing the campers with personal identification information that the counselors will keep on file. This way, if anything bad were to happen to a camper, those in charge would be able to contact the parents and take the necessary steps to address the information. Sometimes, camps will ask for your child’s Social Security numbers (SSN) to keep on file, claiming it is in case of an emergency. However, according to Adam Levin, former director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, these places don’t often really need this information as proof of your child’s identity.
Don’t let your child’s credit score get compromised
An opportunistic thief could easily access your child’s identity when you allow it to enter a database of a summer camp, and once they have it, this thief could open up accounts using this new blank credit report and damage their credit score before they even apply for a loan of their own.
Be extra careful with your youngster’s identity and hold onto their Social Security number so that you and your child can rest easy while they are away at camp.