Here's how college students can prevent identity theft - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Here's how college students can prevent identity theft

Posted: Updated:
RALEIGH, N.C. -

Consumer experts are warning college students they are the fastest-growing group being targeted for identity theft. And there are a bunch of reasons why.

The Better Business Bureau tells WNCN students aren't monitoring their credit card statements like older folks do and they take longer to report fraud. That means the loss is much bigger.

The BBB said identity theft committed against people age 18 to 24 took about four months on average to detect. The average student lost more than $1,000, Which is roughly five times more than the amount lost by other age groups.

The experts have these tips for students to fight this trend:

1) Send sensitive mail to a parent's home or a post office box. School mailboxes are not always secure and often can be accessed easily in a dorm or apartment.

2) Important documents should be stored under lock and key. This includes a Social Security card, passport and bank statements. Shred credit card offers and any paper documents that have sensitive financial information rather than just tossing them out.

3) Make sure your computer has up-to-date antivirus and spyware software. Always install any updates to your computer's operating system or browser software, which help keep your computer safe from any new advances by identity thieves online.

4) Always check your credit card statements closely for any suspicious activity. The sooner you identify any potential fraud, the less you will suffer in the long run.

Jonathan Carlson

Jonathan is an investigative reporter and anchor with over a decade of experience. Jonathan has broken stories that have resulted in local and statewide change. Contact our Investigative Team anytime HERE. More>>

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