I found this information in a post on the Pinellas County Victim Rights Coalition website. It should be of particular interest to the parents of children under 16 years of age. The new law will enable a parent to put a “security freeze” on their child’s personal identification information to prevent criminals from opening illegal lines of credit in the child’s name. This legislation is sorely needed, especially as we are currently witnessing an unprecedented spike in frauds committed through identity and account thefts.
Excellent news to help keep our minor children safe: Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (DACS) Commissioner Adam Putnam worked with the Florida Legislature this past session to pass the Keeping I.D.’s Safe (KIDS) Act ( SB 242).
This legislation allows parents of minors to contact the three credit reporting bureaus, open up a credit record for their child and freeze it, thus preventing anyone from starting credit in the child’s name. Identity theft of children is a growing trend in Florida and across the nation, and more than 50,000 children have their identities stolen in Florida each year.
Although there are existing ways for adults to freeze their own credit, there was no way to freeze a child’s credit until this legislation was passed. This legislation, coupled with other precautions and tips DACS is making available to parents, will be one more tool that helps give parents control over their child’s future. The law became effective September 1st.