Mrs Fraud and minors

By Dianne Ojar-Ali


One of our roles as parents is to protect our kids from everything on the face of the earth that could possibly bring them harm. Well, the unfortunate part to all this is that Mrs. Fraud does not discriminate when it comes to the age of her victims.

Minors are the most perfect targets for the likes of Mrs. Fraud, because they have squeaky clean credit histories. So, protecting our children from the deviousness of Mrs. Fraud needs to be added to our list of parental responsibilities.

Through databases, Mrs. Fraud can be watching our children every day: online in cyber space she can track their social insurance, medical records and school records. Trust me, Mrs. Fraud and her friends have been getting away with this crime for years. No one ever checks up on a youngster’s credit reports and, technically, there really has been no reason to have to request a credit check on a minor – until now.

Besides our minors being on databases that can be tapped into by the likes of Mrs. Fraud, we also have to look at how safe they are online, when they are exposed to the world on the internet. How many of us actually know the groups our children belong to, or monitor the total number of hours they spend chatting with their friends online?

I know that we all want to trust our kids and our kids are hoping that we trust them; however, what do we do to keep that trust? I believe that we have to start by having open conversations with our children and come to a mutual understanding when it comes to how much time is spent on the computer and the level of security controls implemented. The internet is a wonderful tool for our young children and it is not going to go away. However, how it is utilized is an important factor to consider. We, as parents, can limit the amount of surfing they do as well as control the sites our kids visit. We have the means to protect them from the dangers of the Mrs. Frauds out there in cyber land.

Here are some safe practices you can choose to implement:

Ø The child should only be online when a responsible adult is at home. If a teenager is with the child, then who is watching the teenager?

Ø Install software on the computer that blocks any sites that may not be suitable, or may be offensive for children to view.

Ø Speak to your kids about the social media sites. Explain that when they chat with their friends everyday about their daily activities, that Mrs. Fraud could easily be eavesdropping and creating a file about them. In turn, she will try to befriend them, using the information she has gathered. The ‘do not chat to strangers rule’ still applies.

Ø Tell your children not to give out, or discuss, any personal information about anyone in your family, where you live, the school they attend, or their date of birth.

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Dianne Ojar-Ali is the author of, “Mrs. Fraud and You ~ Will You be the Victim or Victor when She comes Knocking?”