27/10/2011 05:48 BST | Updated 26/12/2011 05:12 GMT

University Students 'Risking Identity Theft' For Posting Information Online

Almost half of students are worried that personal information posted online could affect their future careers, a survey suggests.

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), which conducted the poll, raised concerns that many young people are not properly protecting themselves against identity theft.

The survey of 500 university students found that 42% are concerned that personal information about them online could affect their future employment prospects.

But many are not taking steps to protect themselves and keep their privacy.

One in three (33%) students who has lived at another address while at university still has not had their important post redirected to their current university home.

And over three quarters (76%) have not checked their credit rating in the last year, with two thirds (66%) admitting they have never had it checked, potentially allowing suspicious credit applications to go unnoticed.

The ICO conducted the poll to mark the launch of its 2011 Student Brand Ambassador Campaign.

Information commissioner Christopher Graham said: "In tough times, young people are clearly less relaxed about privacy, particularly in relation to information that they post online - but many may not know what they can do about it.

"The Student Brand Ambassador campaign is about arming students with the advice they need to protect themselves from obvious dangers such as identity theft and keeping their social lives private."

The YouGov poll questioned 500 full-time university students online between October 14 and 17.