Experts warn against 'sharenting': Putting too much about kids online

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(2/15/2018) - Parents love to show off their kids, especially on social media.

But all those cute stories and videos could actually be putting them at risk. Experts coined the term "sharenting" to describe parents overusing social media to post about their kids.

While it may seem harmless, Denise Groene with the Better Business Bureau says scammers could be using your posts to build identity profiles of your children.

According to Consumer Reports, the youngest identity theft victim was just 1-month old.

"If you're posting about their birthday, it's not hard for information to get into the wrong hands," Groene said. "Now, somebody knows the birth date of you child and if they do a little bit more digging they might be able to find their social security number."

Adults typically find out if their identity is stolen pretty quickly. Their bank accounts show immediate fraudulent activity or their credit scores drop.

But most children don't have traditional bank accounts and lines of credit, so it could be years before anybody notices the issue.

There are steps to prevent your children from facing these unforeseen predators.

"One thing that you can do as a parent to help protect your child from becoming a victim of identity theft is putting a freeze on your child's credit bureau reports," Groene said.

The three major credit monitoring agencies -- Equifax, TransUnion and Experian -- all offer services to freeze your child's information. However, the process can be time-consuming.

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