How Teens Can Protect Their Identities During Spring Break
Spring break for high schoolers is approaching, and whether your teen is taking a vacation with the family or just spending time with friends, it’s a good time to make sure they are protecting their devices. Some teens may already be quite familiar with how to do this, but other teens, especially younger teens, may not be sufficiently careful. Therefore, it’s probably best to make sure they understand how to protect their devices. So, here are some safety tips your teens should be aware of.
Lock Any Mobile Devices That Are Not Being Used
This is a very simple precaution, and yet it is important. It could keep a thief from ever accessing your teen’s information if your device requires a pin, biometrics, or a password to unlock the phone or tablet. Unfortunately, many people do not use a password or pin to protect their phone, and even less place these on their children’s phones. This is a very bad practice since without a pin, password, or biometric login being required, anyone who finds your teen’s tablet or phone, should it be lost, will have access to the information on the mobile device.
Use a Virtual Private Network
Using a virtual private network (VPN) is a great way to increase the security of your teen’s mobile device. A VPN can be especially useful on a trip when your teen is more likely to be using public WiFi. A VPN will help to preserve your teen’s privacy by keeping their IP address private. Additionally, it will keep their data safe by encrypting it.
Create Effective Passwords
One of the most important steps your teen can take to protect the information on their devices is to use secure passwords. Make sure your teen uses effective passwords. Using a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters along with numbers and symbols is good, or a unique phrase that preferably includes some numbers or symbols. Also, be sure your teen uses a different password for each account they have. It’s also important for them to change their passwords regularly, and this is something many teens probably don’t think about. So, spring break would probably be a good time to have your teen change their passwords.
Use a Password Manager
It can be difficult to remember passwords, especially if the passwords are actually safe. A password manager is a good way for your teen to safely store their passwords where they can easily access them. Although, make sure the password app they use is trustworthy. Then, once they find a password manager that can be trusted, they may be more likely to create effective passwords.
Spring break can be a fun and memorable time for your teen. But, your teen needs to protect their devices during this time to ensure that their break isn’t ruined by having their identity stolen. If you or your teen suspects their identity has been stolen, you should contact the police as well as any financial institutions they have accounts with. It might also be a good idea to freeze their credit to keep anyone from opening accounts with their identity.
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