New law will soon help protect children’s credit from fraud
WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Attorney General Roy Cooper says parents will soon have a new tool to help protect their children’s credit from fraud.
North Carolina House Bill 607 takes effect January 1 and gives parents and guardians the ability to freeze the credit reports of all children under age 16.
“A security freeze locks down your credit report to keep identity thieves from opening accounts and racking up debts in your name,” Cooper said. “ID theft can strike victims of any age and now parents can protect their kids’ credit from the very beginning.”
Wilmington Financial Analyst Ross Marino said it is something you might not think about for your children, but could be helpful.
“You and I may see our credit all the time, but I don’t know when you ever see your children’s credit, so someone could steal it who knows how long they could actually have their credit stolen for,” Marino said.
Here is how you do it:
- Request a security freeze for your child under age 16 by mail, by telephone, or online. Visit ncdoj.gov/creditfreeze for contact information.
- To lift a freeze permanently or temporarily, use the PIN or password established when setting up the freeze.
- It may cost up to $5 per credit bureau to place or lift a freeze on a child’s credit.
- A freeze is free if the child already has a credit report or has been a victim of identity theft.
North Carolina adults can freeze their credit reports for free online with each of the three major credit bureaus. Once your credit is frozen, you can thaw it when needed to take out credit yourself.
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