Yet Social Security numbers are routinely used to help verify consumer identities at all sorts of institutions, whether applying for credit or calling in with a question about a bank account or insurance policy. After all, the cost of handling a few fraudulent credit card transactions or even loans taken out under false names often pales compared to the cost of upgrading legacy computers to handle more sophisticated identity verification.
And moving to systems that require users do more than prove they know a code like a Social Security number, password, or PIN takes some setup, says Pat Cox, vice president at telecom and tech company Neustar. Some other countries, perhaps most notably Estonia , have set up national digital identification systems that people can use to prove who they are online or in person without simply relying on a password-style code like U. Validate the reason and the authority first, then make sure to ask questions about how your number will be stored, treated, shared, and protected.
Possibilities: A Financial Resource for Parents of Children with Disabilities
Offer an alternative form of ID. Ask why and how the SSN will be handled.
Why is having my Social Security number necessary? With whom will you share my number if I provide it? How will my number be stored?
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3 Steps to Take If Your Social Security Number Has Been Stolen
Shred mail and documents with personal details. Monitor bank and credit card accounts. Use an identity protection service. Don't forget to protect your child's SSN. Compare Investment Accounts. The offers that appear in this table are from partnerships from which Investopedia receives compensation. Related Articles.
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Social Security Why would someone change their Social Security number? Partner Links. Identity Theft Definition Identity theft is the crime of obtaining the personal or financial information of another person for the sole purpose of assuming that person's name or identity in order to make transactions or purchases.
Spoofing Spoofing is a scam in which criminals attempt to obtain personal information by pretending to be a legitimate business or other innocent party. After checking my credit report and making sure it was accurate, I then opened another my Social Security account. The block is still in place and Social Security sent me a confirmation. But if I call to request direct deposit or mailing address agencies, the agency said, I may be asked to visit my local Social Security office to confirm my identity. And no one else had access to personal details to change my password.
How to protect your Social Security number: 10 SSN tips | Norton
America is in the midst of an age boom and with it, an amazing transition. In general, those over the age of 50 are expected to live longer than any previous generation This is a BETA experience. You may opt-out by clicking here. Next Avenue.