Don t let credit cards rule your

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Don t let credit cards rule your

Nobody thinks to check their child's credit report because there's no reason to expect them to have one.

Criminals can exploit the stolen identity undetected for years, until the child grows up to find his or her credit ruined. How bad is the problem?

Criminals find children's identities anywhere they're stored in quantities, such as schools — and some of your child's personal information may be handed out there, just for the asking.

Don t let credit cards rule your

Directory information varies by school district, but it may contain your child's name, address, phone number, birthday and birthplace, and email address. Combine this information with a stolen Social Security number, and a criminal has everything they need to open accounts and run up massive amounts of unpaid debt in your child's name.

You can opt out of directory information entirely or choose which information will be restricted and which is accessible.

Don t let credit cards rule your

Unfortunately, there's no uniform rule on how the opt-out is offered. A school district may include a form with a beginning-of-year information packet, they may bury the option on a website, or they may make the forms available at the office upon request.

Your school may not even have a standard form at all.

Apply for a New Card with a Higher Credit Limit

If your school district has no opt-out form, you can use third-party forms like the one provided by the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood and the Parent Coalition for Student Privacy.

The form directs the school to release only specific information and to limit the access of that information for specific purposes per your request. Even with these limitations, FERPA allows release of some of your child's personal information without consent. Release situations include transfers to other school districts, parties connected to financial aid, and school officials with a "legitimate educational interest" in the information.

Department of Education's website. FERPA offers protection with respect to schools, but you're mostly on your own to block other avenues for identity thieves. Take the same cautious approach with any place that retains your child's personal information, such as doctor's offices and hospitals, day care centers, and even libraries if your child has a library card.

Private entities like sports teams or clubs outside of school may ask for personal information in their applications.

Prevent Child Identity Theft With These Simple Steps

Protections are likely to be weak, so be very judicious when giving out your child's information. Only give out your child's data when absolutely necessary. When you must give out data, ask how the data is protected.

Find out who has access to that data and when they can access it. Use all opt-outs that are available to you.

Of course, social media and online sites offer plenty of opportunities for your child's information to be stolen. All your efforts will be wasted if your child hands over the information online. Make sure your children understand the importance of protecting their information, and how their future can suffer if they don't.

Growing up is hard enough without spending your early adulthood repairing identity theft damage. If you would like to prevent identity theft, join MoneyTips and check out our free Identity Protector tool.For example, let’s say you want $1, worth of living room furniture, but don’t have the cash to pay for it immediately.

If you charge the items to a credit card with an 18 percent interest rate, and cover the balance in four months, the finance fees would total just $ › Credit Cards.

Keep in mind, if you’re under 21, according to the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act of , you either have an adult co-signer or show that you make enough money on your own to repay any money you spend on your credit  · You are making an international purchase.

If you book a last-minute flight to Paris, be sure to let your credit card company know of your Don’t let an avoidable credit card problem ruin your vacation.

By planning ahead and being prepared with your credit card situation, you can ensure that your family has more time to enjoy the sights rather than spending time on the phone arguing with your financial To calculate utilization, divide your statement balance (across all of your credit cards) by your available credit (across all of your credit cards).

For example, if you have credit limits of $40, across 4 credit cards, and you have a total balance of $20, – then you have a utilization of  · But don't let this blind you for the rest of your spending: make sure you maximise what you get elsewhere too (it may be worth having two cards).

Also remember that lots of cards use a 'double earn' promise, so it looks like you get more points using your credit card in the linked store, but actually you would've got the same just using its › › Credit Cards.

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