“Good morning, class! Today we are going to cover identity theft.”
With everything going on in the world right now, many of us find ourselves in charge of our children’s education. The reality is, homeschooling isn’t something we’re all experts at.
If you are looking for a few other lessons, or just one, to add to the day’s activities that aren’t television or video games, an important topic to cover is identity theft.
Before you disregard this topic as something pointless to teach children, here is something you really need to know:
Children are one of the most targeted groups of people for identity thieves and fraudsters.
More to the point, children are the perfect blank slate – their SIN numbers can be used to open accounts and credit cards, obtain passports, identification, and other official documents. Often, you, the parent, won’t realize there is a problem until your child is old enough to open an account of their own, apply for credit cards, and so on. By then, the fraudster has been ruining their credit score. Yikes!
To teach is to protect!
We might as well give credit where credit is due – thieves are getting smarter and sneakier all the time. It is our responsibility as adults to equip children with the tools they need to protect themselves against those who would take advantage. Remember, children can be careless with “low-risk” information (phone numbers, address, hometown, etc.).
- What personal identification is and why it’s important to keep it safe.
- Explain what identity theft is.
- Offer responsible online and social media tips.
- How to handle identity-filled documents or accounts.
*Here is a more detailed lesson plan.
Most importantly, how to safely dispose of documents that contain personal information. Remind your children that it can never be thrown in the trash. Instead, it should always be shredded!