Throughout the history of man the basic unit of security has been the family. As the need for support increased the family expanded to tribes to villages finally to counties. The core unit for building a Privacy Security Culture still remains the family. Parents need to instill in their children the need to keep private information private.
Start with small tasks. Have them tear the address off mail and magazines and throw them in the shred box. Let them go through the paper recycle box looking for family names, email addresses, telephone numbers, birthdates, Social Security numbers, account numbers, screen names, user IDs, IM user identifiers and any account statements. Make it a game and reward them for how many they find. Please do not let little fingers close to the shredder and keep the shredder unplugged.
Make sure they understand that no personal information should be put online. They need to understand they should not trust any web-site to keep them safe. The very best security is to never put any private information in a profile.
Parents need to know what the children are doing online and the sites they are visiting. The FTC has a wealth of information on keeping your children safe online. Parents also need to know how to prevent or stop cyberbullying. Ask your children’s organizations and schools how they protect the information they have about your children.
Parents also need to protect their own identities since children learn best by example. Get and check your free credit reports from http://www.AnnualCreditReport.com. You can get a free credit report from each of the credit reporting bureaus every 12 months. A strategy would be to get a report from a different company every four months. Lock in a secure filing cabinet or fire safe papers, tax forms, statements, and medical information that contain private information.
Also, consider a identity monitoring service that covers the entire family and provides restoration services like Identity Theft Shield.
Start today building a Culture of Security in your family.