Q:  I have 2 children and I’m a single parent, does it make sense to get family protection? My kids are 10 and 2.

A:  It’s an excellent idea to protect your entire family from identity theft. Although it may seem far-fetched, child identity theft is very common and on the rise. The reason? When a child is born parents usually apply for a Social Security number. This Social Security number and your child’s name are all that is needed to open many credit-based accounts. And because the most minors don’t think about ordering their credit reports until they are older and looking for credit, they don’t find out about this theft until it’s too late.  (Note: an individual’s credit report does not exist until an application for credit, a credit account, or a public record is associated with that person.  So unless your child is already an identity theft victim, it is unlikely they have a credit report.)

The fact that child identity theft can go undetected for years is a rather nerve-racking idea. During this time, identity thieves could be using your child’s personal information to fraudulently apply for credit cards and other types of credit.  Common opportunities for the theft of a minor’s personal information include seeming innocuous activities like school and sports registration.  That’s why it’s a good idea to protect your entire family, including your children, from identity theft.

Our most economical, top-rated service for protecting your family is TrustedID. TrustedID features comprehensive identity theft protection via 3-bureau credit monitoring, monitoring for personal information in a variety of sources, medical record protection, computer protection and access to all three credit reports and scores (for 2 adults only). Their service monitors the Internet black market for the potentially fraudulent or suspicious use of SSNs, names, addresses, credit/debit cards and bank accounts. And right now TrustedID is offering NextAdvisor readers an exclusive 14-day free trial and 10% discount.