Social Security Number Monitoring & Protection Services
- Don't let your SSN get stolen!
- IDShield offers professional Social Security number monitoring services to protect against identity theft & unauthorized use.
A Social Security number (SSN) is a nine-digit number that the Social Security Administration (SSA), a U.S. government agency, issues to all U.S. citizens and eligible U.S. residents who apply for one.
The Social Security number was developed in 1935 as a way for the U.S. government to efficiently track individuals’ lifetime earnings and number of years worked in order to determine eligibility, calculate benefit payments, and pay Social Security income at retirement.
Today, your Social Security number is now used for a wide range of purposes.
These purposes can include but are not limited to:
- Obtaining credit
- Opening a bank account
- Applying for a federal loan
- Applying for certain types of public assistance
- Enrolling in Medicare or private insurance
- Buying a home or a car
- Obtaining a driver’s license
- Applying for a passport
Don’t let your Social Security number get stolen!
It’s important to note that though your Social Security number is now used for more than its original intended purpose, it’s vital to limit usage to only necessary applications. Another way to protect your Social Security number or Social Security card is to keep it in either a safe deposit box or a home-safe instead of keeping it in your wallet or carrying it on your person.
Protecting your Social Security number can help prevent identity theft from happening to you.
What is Social Security Number Protection?
Identity theft can be stressful, time-consuming and expensive to resolve. Many people are turning to identity monitoring to better safeguard their most personal information. Social Security monitoring involves using a scanning system to alert users when any suspicious activity happens. Some advanced Social Security protection services utilize the help of licensed private investigators who then run advanced SSN Skip Trace searches to uncover hidden theft and fraud.
Why Would Someone Want to Steal Your SSN?
Identity thieves want your Social Security number essentially so they can commit fraud and steal money.
They do this by using your Social Security number in a variety of different ways such as:
- Applying for jobs
- Opening financial accounts
- Draining your existing bank account
- Enrolling in health insurance
- Poaching your health insurance
- Getting medical treatment under your name
- Signing up for a credit card
- Applying for a passport
- Filing a fraudulent tax return to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
- Getting a driver’s license
- Stealing your unemployment or Social Security benefits
How Do Social Security Numbers Get Stolen?
Identity theft and fraud is a booming black market business. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), as many as 9 million reports of ID theft happen each year—and with individuals’ online footprint expanding these numbers seem to be on the rise.
The most common ways SSNs are stolen:
- Stuffing – creating false websites that look like commonly used websites in order to obtain login and other personal information
- Phishing – pretending to be financial institutions (your bank, PayPal, etc.) or popular regularly-used companies in order to get you to reveal your personal information
- Pretexting – getting personal information under false pretenses and then selling it to other people or the dark web
- Hacking – exploiting weakness in a computer system either easily through unsecured Wi-Fi networks (think coffee shops) or more elaborate breaches into semi-secured websites
- Dumpster Diving – thieves have been known to go through people’s trash to look for bills and other discarded papers with personal information on it
- Stealing – stealing wallets, purses, personnel records, or bribing employees who have access to mail, which includes bank and credit card statements, pre-approved credit offers, new checks, or tax information