In an era of tech-everything, hackers are now targeting your kid's identity. They're doing it through Vtech Toys. They come in mini lap tops, cell phones, watches, etc. If there's a high-tech gadget out there, it's likely V-tech has made a similar gadget for your child.
The popular children's toy maker, V tech reported last month that hackers got through their "Learning Lodge app store" database. The cyber grinches got a hold of personal information for more than 6 million children and 4 million adults.
The app is used for learning games, e-books, and other educational content that gives kids the ability to connect to the internet.
Personal information like names, birth dates of kids, mailing and e-mail addresses was among the information stolen.
Cyber expert, Greg Scasny with Cybersecurity Defense Solutions, tells FOX 4 that even though Social Security or credit card numbers were not stolen in this breach, it's enough information for hackers to build a profile with your child's identity.
" He used a very very simple technique," Scasny said. "It's called an SYQL injection to get into that website and basically download 11.65 million records of people."
Scasny says hackers can use simple information and slowly build a profile with a child's information.
A clean credit history can be used to apply for benefits, open bank accounts, and apply for loans.
Beth Schell with Lee County Sheriff's Fraud unit says that even though data breaches are common there are ways to lessen the chances of children being a target.
"There's a new law that went into effect," Schell said. "A parent or a guardian can actually request a freeze to be placed on a child's credit report."
Schell says that the law requires credit reporting agencies to establish and freeze a credit record for a minor upon request by a parent or guardian. By freezing your child's credit, you can block others from using it.
Here are more helpful tips from LCSO:
- Keep your child's personal information private by not sharing their "real" name, address, telephone number, or name of their school when creating their online presence.
- ANY device that connects to the Internet needs to be kept free from viruses and malware. Update the software regularly on the device itself as well as the mobile applications you use to control the device.
- Monitor your credit reports, examine your credit card and bank statements closely, and never give out your social security number to someone you do not know.