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What Can I Do If My Kid's Device or Account Has Been Hacked?

Q&A

As soon as kids create an online account, their data is at risk—and it's only as secure as the service that's protecting it. That's no reason to panic, since all tech platforms can be vulnerable to attack. You can help your children protect themselves by discussing online safey and privacy.

If you suspect that your child's device or account has been hacked, here are some steps you can take:

  • Change your password and sign out of all devices. Create a new, strong password and log out of devices that are linked to the account. For example, your child's YouTube login may be saved on multiple devices. That way, you can make sure the hacker can't get back into your account.
  • Check linked accounts. Many of us have multiple apps synced, like our social media accounts being synced with our emails. Make sure to unlink those accounts while you secure your profile.
  • Remove your banking information. If you have a bank account saved on the platform that was hacked, delete the information. Contact your bank to make sure there is no suspicious activity on your account. Change your login for the bank account, too.
  • Update your passwords on other sites and platforms. This way, you can prevent the hacker from accessing additional information. Consider using a password manager to store your passwords.
  • Check your account recovery information. Go to the settings for that platform or devices and make sure the recovery email address and phone number are the ones you entered.
  • Turn on two-factor authentication. If this option is available, be sure to use it to help make your account more secure. This requires you to use two different accounts to sign into a platform or device.
  • Review your account activity. Check your account to see posts or messages the hacker may have shared, or profiles they may have followed online.

Of course, prevention is always better than cleaning up after a hack. Use these tips to talk with your kid about protecting their data and privacy online.

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