4 Steps to Take If Your Social Security Number Has Been Stolen

Whether your personal information has been subjected to by hacking or you’ve been a victim of identity theft, before you panic, there are steps you can take to minimize the damage.

Security breaches at large corporations are common. In fact, according to the National Cyber Security Alliance, over 143 million Americans have had their information stolen in recent years. Many of these individuals have had their Social Security numbers stolen, which has led to identity theft. These are just a few examples of the many large-scale security breaches that have occurred in recent years.

If your Social Security number were stolen, it could be taken from documents in your mailbox or trash can, or by someone fraudulently posing as a representative of a trusted institution. If you think that your Social Security number has been stolen, here are three things you can do to protect yourself:


  1. If you believe your identity has been stolen, report it to the proper authorities.

    The Social Security Administration suggests that you contact the FTC’s website IdentityTheft.gov, or file a police report with your local jurisdiction. Your city or county may not be able to investigate identity theft, but having a police report is useful documentation when recovering from identity theft.

  2. Request a credit freeze with the three major consumer credit bureaus.

    A credit freeze will not affect your credit score, but it will prevent your credit report from being accessed by lenders and used to do many things including opening new accounts, renting apartments, or applying for loans. If you need to do any of these things, then you’ll have to temporarily suspend your credit freeze. You can also request an extended fraud alert from the consumer credit bureau.

  3. If you think your Social Security number has been used fraudulently, contact the fraud department of the company or agency that issued it.

     You may want to consider choosing the path to request a new Social Security Number from the Social Security Administration. However, this is not as easy as it sounds. You will have to prove that your Social Security Number has been used by someone else to commit identity theft, that you have suffered harm, and that you have done everything possible to catch the thief. Furthermore, your old number will still be valid but you should look for additional protection.

  4. Choose SSN Protection. LifeLock is a comprehensive solution that I use myself.
    • Identity and SSN alerts
    • Stolen funds reimbursement up to $1M
    • Annual 3-bureau credit reports
    • 24/7 live support
    • 24/7 live member support


Bottom Line

When your Social Security number has been stolen, the most important thing is to act quickly. Always know your options and don’t let a thief steal your identity. Protect yourself by understanding what you can do to combat identity theft.

I hope this article was helpful, if you have any questions please feel free to contact me. If you would like to be notified of when I create a new post you can subscribe to my blog alert.

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