Identity thieves are just one of many predators plying the Internet. And, actions by one computer user could infect the machine for all users. That's a concern when dealing with personal financial details or tax information.
Kids should be warned against oversharing personal information on social media.
Oversharing about home addresses, a new family car or a parent's new job gives
identity thieves a window into an extra bit of information they need to impersonate you.
Aging parents also are prime targets for identity thieves. If they are browsing the
internet, they made need to the same conversation about online security, avoiding spam
email schemes and oversharing on social media.
They may also need assistance for someone to routinely review charges to their
credit cards, withdrawals from their financial accounts. Unused credit cards should be
canceled. An annual review should be made of their credit reports at
to ensure no new accounts are being opened by thieves,
and reviewing the Social Security Administration account to ensure no excessive
income is accruing to their account.
Seniors also are especially vulnerable to scam calls and pressure from fraudsters
posing as legitimate organizations, including the Internal Revenue Service, and
demanding payment for debts not owed. The IRS will never make threats of lawsuit or
jail or demand that a certain payment method, such as a debit card, be made. The IRS
will not telephone you and ask for money unless they have first contacted you by letter.
Do not share any information with “the IRS” until you are positive that is with whom you
Fraudsters will try to trick seniors, telling them they have won a grand prize in a
contest or that a relative needs money – anything to persuade a person to give up
personal information such as their Social Security number or financial account
Some simple steps – and a conversation – can help the young and old avoid
identity theft schemes and scammers.