How to protect your social security
There’s no way to keep your Social Security number hidden after it’s been seen by potential identity thieves. There are, however, steps you can do to protect your Social Security number and reduce the chance of it being used against you if it is stolen.
Here’s how you can keep your Social Security number safe:
• Know who requires your social security number and who does not.
• Don’t store your social security card on you.
• Documents containing your Social Security number should be shredded.
• In unwanted calls or emails, don’t give them your Social Security number.
Where should you store your social security?
Do not carry your Social Security card in your wallet or documents containing your Social Security number. If you receive bank statements or other documents that contain your Social Security number, keep them safe or properly shred them if you don’t need them.
“Make sure you keep your Social Security card in a safe, locked location in your house where you can find it and get it when you need it,” advice from Amy Nofziger, director of victim support at AARP’s Fraud Watch Network. “Make sure to trash any documents that contain personal information. A cross-cut or confetti shredder is recommended.”
How to spot a social security scam before it happens
People posing as representatives from the IRS, the Social Security Administration, or financial institutions call some elderly and say they need to validate their Social Security numbers. However, none of those groups is likely to contact you and ask for your phone number.
One common phone scam involves falsely informing potential victims that their Social Security number has been suspended, which is difficult to do because Social Security numbers cannot be suspended.
What To Do If Your Social Security Has Been Stolen?
If your social security has been compromised, contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213. You can also visit social security offices near me to find out what exactly you need to do to get a new one.