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For Immediate Release:
September 17, 2020
Contact: 518-486-9844
press@dos.ny.gov
Follow us on Twitter @NYSDOS

Consumer Alert: New York State Division of Consumer Protection Offers Online Safety Tips at the Start of the New School Year

Technology is a Key Part of the New Normal when it comes to Learning

Follow Tips to Protect your Child’s Personal Information when they are Online

The New York State Division of Consumer Protection (DCP) is advising parents, guardians and caregivers to review their online settings during this new school year. Whether your children are going to school in-person, virtually or following a hybrid schedule, the start of a new school year is a great time to ensure everyone’s privacy remains protected while online.

“Back to school this year may not be what we expected, but it is an opportunity for all of us to reevaluate our home networks as many students continue to learn at home,” said New York State Secretary of State Rossana Rosado. “If you opted for remote or blended learning for your family or if you are working from home, take the start of the new school year to make sure your systems are protecting you and not aiding nefarious actors.”

With children online more, parents must be vigilant to protect their child’s sensitive information and help prevent identity theft and fraud victimization. Children are 35 times more likely to become victims of identity theft. Children’s identities are especially attractive to thieves because the theft of the child’s identity often remains undetected for years.

Parents and guardians of children under the age of 16 are legally permitted to place a free security freeze on their child’s credit record. A security freeze prevents anyone from opening a credit account in the child’s name and stops the credit reporting agencies from releasing the child’s credit report to third parties. A parent or guardian interested in placing a freeze can find helpful information on DCP’s by clicking here.

Here are more precautions you can take to help prevent your child’s information falling into the wrong hands.

Information Privacy

Video Conferencing

The New York State Division of Consumer Protection serves to educate, assist and empower the State’s consumers. For more consumer protection information, call the Consumer Helpline at 800-697-1220, Monday through Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm. Consumer complaints can be filed anytime online at the Division website, www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection. You can also request a presentation at, www.dos.ny.gov/consumerprotection/informing/request_presentation.htm. Follow the Division at @NYSConsumer or www.facebook.com/nysconsumer.

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