Amazing Kids! Magazine

Protecting your Stuff

By Ryan Traynor, Editor-in-Chief

 

We carry around things of value all the time. It may be a favorite necklace that your grandmother gave you, your wallet or purse, your cell phone, or your collection of baseball cards. Things of value may have monetary value or personal value, but that means they are important to us. How do we protect these things that we don’t want to lose or have stolen? Here are a few ways:

  1. The first way is to avoid the risk of loss. How do you do this? Don’t buy something in the first place. For instance, to avoid the loss of your phone, borrow someone else’s phone when you go someplace that you might lose it and only bring it for very important events. Some teens decide not to buy a car so they don’t have to pay for gas and insurance. They use the bus, walk or ride with friends instead. Avoiding risk is a sure-fire way to eliminate the risk of loss.
  2. If you decide you have to buy something or bring it with you, the next strategy to avoid loss is to reduce the risk. This includes locking items away when you are not carrying them, such as in a hotel room safe. You can also avoid loss by putting alarms on doors that will scare thieves away. If you are like me and don’t want to leave my phone anywhere but my pocket, then you will want to protect it by installing “Find my Phone” software on your device. In this way, if you leave it somewhere or it is stolen, you can locate where it is through your computer.
  3. You can also accept the risk. Decide that if your precious item is lost or stolen, that is okay. You will buy yourself another one or go without it.
  4. You can share the risk with someone else so it is not so catastrophic if a loss happens. This can be sharing with a person, like your parents or sharing with an insurance company. When you share the risk with someone else, you make a deal with that person as to who is going to pay what in the event of a loss. If you get insurance on an item from an insurance company, you pay them a small percentage of the value of your item each month and if there is a loss, they pay for the loss. If there is no loss, they keep the monthly payments.Our identity is an important thing of value that you may not realize is at risk. Children’s identities are copied by thieves and used for various reasons such as getting greater tax refunds, obtaining insurance benefits, or gaining access to credit. Your identity is your most valuable asset. Here are some ways you can protect it, even as a kid:
    1. Never leave personal information in your parent’s car.
    2. Lock devices such as your phone, iPad, and computer with passcodes.
    3. Don’t carry your Social Security Card in your wallet.
    4. Install a firewall, virus protection, and spyware on your computer and update them regularly.
    5. Don’t send personal information such as account numbers, credit card numbers, or PINs via email.
    6. After a web transaction, completely close your browser.
    7. SAFELY store copies of ID cards, etc. Don’t put in a visible place in your house (entry way or table).
    8. Never download files or click on hyperlinks in emails or popups from people or companies you don’t know.
    9. Be wary of strangers you allow in your house and never leave them alone.
    10. Turn your computer completely off when not in use, NOT in sleep mode.

So there’s no reason to be worried about the risk of loss. There are strategies to use to reduce or eliminate this risk and give you peace of mind. Armed with knowledge, you can enjoy life without any worries.

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