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How Students Get Scammed

A new school year means new opportunity for identity thieves to cash in on their prized prey — students. Studies show that children under age 18 are about 50 times more likely than adults to be targeted and victimized for identity theft.

Reasons: It’s unlikely that elementary through high school students monitor their credit … or even have it. That clean credit history more easily allows scammers to open fraudulent accounts — credit cards, loans and utility service — with the identities of your children and grandkids and go undetected for years or even decades. “As long as the identity thief has a Social Security number with a clean history,” explains Richard Power of Carnegie Mellon CyLab, “the thief can attach any name and date of birth to it” to create a false identity to use fraudulently.


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