Howard County Executive Ken Ulman is reminding parents this week that they can take specific action to prevent identity theft by freezing their child’s credit report. As of January 1, 2013, the Maryland Child Identity Lock bill, passed by the Maryland General Assembly in 2012, allows parents to freeze the credit report of a minor prohibiting the credit agencies from releasing information to potential creditors, even if they do not already have a credit record.
“Identity theft of minors is becoming more prevalent and is a problem because it often is not realized until the child is much older and needs to establish credit,” said Ulman. “Fortunately, this Maryland law makes it easy to protect our children. Just contact the credit agencies and place this freeze on their credit report.”
Howard County also is taking the opportunity during National Consumer Protection Week between March 3 and 9, 2013 to educate residents about other safeguards for your child’s identity, the warning signs of a stolen identity, and what you need to do if you think your child’s identity has been stolen. For more information, see www.howardcountymd.gov/childidtheft.pdf.