The social security was created back in 1936, and it was used to tacks the workers’ wages and to monitor how much Social Security they were entitled to. However, over the years, the Social Security has changed, and it has grown into much more than that. Now it acts as an identification number.
Each person has its SSN and not anyone who requests your SSN actually needs it. A qualified organization can run an SSN Search, and they will avoid asking for number. This is why it’s imperative to protect your social security number because identify thefts are a common practice in the U.S.
Provide with an alternative
If a business or an organization ask for your SSN, you can offer a driver license instead. There are also other forms of identification which can serve you. For instance, you can use a passport, proof of current and previous address bills and even ID from a college or university.
Ask a question
Often you will encounter businesses or organizations insisting on your social security number. In this case, you have the right to know why it’s necessary to provide your SSN. For instance, you can ask the following question:
Why do you need my SSN?
With who you will share this information?
How will my SSN be stored?
Will you cover losses if my number gets lost or stolen?
Keep your card at home
Each citizen has an SSN card, and you shouldn’t carry it around with you in a wallet or a purse. Also, avoid entering the number in your phone, laptop or any other device. There will be rare occasions when you need your card. The majority of us have already memorized our social security number, so you don’t need the card.
You should keep your number in the head and you card locked at home. In this way, no one will be able to steal your data.
Discarded mail and papers are perfect for identity theft. In most of them, we have classified data and personal details such as social security number. You should get a shredder at a discount or office supply store and destroy any paperwork that contains your SSN.
While you are it, don’t leave your mail in your mailbox for long periods of time. Stealing mail is another way thieves can get your identity. Make sure you are organized with your mail and always on time.
Don’t use it as a password
We often tend to use the strangest things for our password, and one of them is our SSN. So, instead of using the whole number as a password, you can use a part of it. Usually, the password file can be stolen or decrypted, or someone can watch you type it over a shoulder.
Nowadays, the digital world has become pretty unreliable, so you must do anything to protect your privacy and personal data.