It’s back-to-school season and if your child is heading off to college, you need to be thinking about more than just preparing him for dorm life. You also need to be thinking about protecting your college student’s identity. College offers a lot of independence and a lot of opportunities for students to compromise their identities and mobile security if their not careful. Here are a few tips to protect your college student’s identity.
Shred Credit Card Offers
Once they reach college, students will notice a lot more credit card offers in the mail, most of which will likely end up in the trash. Before throwing away credit card applications students should learn to always shred the offers. Throwing away offers without shredding them could enable a thief to fill out the form and obtain a card in your name. Applications can also contain personal information that a college student wouldn’t want falling into the wrong hands.
Monitor Your Bank Statements
College students often fail to scrutinize their financial accounts. Scrutinizing bank statements is the best way to notice improper purchases and catch someone early who might be trying to steal your identity. It also is more likely that your bank will return your funds to you alert them to unauthorized purchases early.
Beware of File-Sharing Programs
A lot of college students enjoy sharing files, like music, directly from their computers. Users can use software that connects them to a peer-to-peer network, enabling them to search and download shared files from the computers of others connected to the network. Yet, peer-to-peer file sharing programs could also make it easier for a thief to gain unauthorized access to your computer.
Protect Personal Information
Sometimes being on a college campus can give students a false sense of security. Identity theft can occur when a student’s guard is down. Students should always send sensitive mail with personal information to their home addresses because school mailboxes are not always secure and can often be accessed easily by multiple people in a dorm. Personal documents that are kept in the dorms should be stored somewhere secure, preferably under lock and key. In a dorm situation where students are living with roommates, you never know who could have access to important documents left out on a desk.