What Someone Could Use Your Social Security Number For

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Losing your Social Security number can be a traumatic experience. It can be extremely frightening. If you are using your Social Security Number on any online platform and feeling afraid of a data breach, you must know what someone could use your social security number for.

Well, Using someone another Social security number is not such easy. If hackers steal information from anywhere you place your personally identifiable information (PII), it is dangerous and can be threatening.

The thieves can use this information to apply for loans, avoid criminal responsibility, or attempt to steal your taxes, social benefits, or even medical coverage.

What Can Happen To You In Case Someone Steals Your Social Security Number?

Stealing someone’s social security number isn’t something to be taken lightly. It’s a violation of the Social Security Act and can lead to significant fines, penalties, and legal consequences. Social security numbers aren’t secret. There are plenty of ways that people can figure out your social security number without having to hack into your phone or computer, and that doesn’t even include people who work directly for the government. Here are many cases in which you can get lost:

1. Financial identity theft

There are plenty of reasons why someone might want to steal your identity and use your SSN as the basis of a new set of credit cards. For example, a person might want to steal your identity and use your credit line to raise huge debts. Or maybe they’d instead steal your identity to get loans on a fraudulent basis.

Identity thieves can often get away with financial crimes because they steal identities without breaking into a financial institution. The typical target of such an attack is someone with access to online banking. An identity thief can access your bank account by using a simple phishing scam that tricks you into giving up your login credentials. Once the thieves have that information, they can log into your account and transfer funds out of it, which may take a few minutes to a few days. They can also log into your accounts, check your statements, and deposit checks into your account.

As a bonus, the thieves can do this without you knowing anything about it. When you sign into your bank account online, you can see how many pending transactions and how much money is in your account. You won’t notice anything suspicious or out of the ordinary, and you might not even know anything is wrong until it’s too late. Identity theft can be costly. Your credit score can go down, you may be unable to get a loan for a business, or you could even lose your job.

2. Social Security benefits fraud

Social Security claims are among the most significant claims made by the U.S. government. While it is possible for someone who steals a social security number to file for disability benefits or to collect on a retirement account, the overwhelming majority of people who file a social security claim are working. In fact, according to the Social Security Administration, there are an estimated 11 million workers and job seekers whose social security number is already taken and who are likely to file a fraudulent claim.

3. Tax identity theft

It’s estimated that more than 10 million tax identities are stolen yearly. Tax Identity Theft occurs when someone wrongfully obtains your personal information and uses it to file fraudulent tax returns. The IRS may not always tell you if your information is being used in a fraud, but you can take steps to protect yourself, even if you haven’t been notified of any possible identity theft.

4. Medical identity theft

When you think about medical identity theft, you may think about some of the stories you’ve heard about patients losing their insurance benefits because they were billed for services they did not receive. The reality is a bit more complicated and is more common than you might expect.

Identity theft is a growing problem called “the crime of the 21st century.” It’s hard to pinpoint how many people are affected, but it’s estimated that millions of Americans, including doctors and dentists, have had their personal information stolen from various sources. Patients should always check their credit reports and credit scores for inaccuracies to stop this crime.

5. Criminal identity theft

Identity theft is when someone uses your personal information, including your name, address, phone number, or Social Security Number, to commit fraud. Criminal identity theft involves a crime in which a perpetrator uses another individual’s name, date of birth, or social security number to obtain fraudulent financial accounts, credit cards, or loans. Once criminal identity theft occurs, the perpetrator may have the opportunity to make illegal purchases and commit fraudulent acts that could impact her. The risk of criminal identity theft exists even if you don’t have your identity stolen. Often, criminals are looking for a target of opportunity, and in some cases, they will use someone else’s information to commit fraud.

6. Utility fraud

Utility fraud is a scam that exists in all industries. The idea is that the company providing a free sample or offering a discounted rate for a limited time is just trying to get you to sign up for a service you may not want or need. While this tactic is often used to sell products or services, it also applies to companies.

Examples include utility fraud against water utilities and gas companies, telecom fraud against mobile phone providers, energy fraud (such as overcharging for electricity and natural gas), and mortgage fraud. Utility fraud is often tough to detect because these cases are often low-dollar, long-term crimes, and the impact on customers is usually not immediately apparent.

7. Other nefarious activities

Identity theft may be one of the most lucrative crimes in the world. If a thief can obtain personal financial information, credit reports, and medical history, they can use the information to steal your identity. Using stolen identities, thieves can commit fraud and run up huge debts, ultimately repaid by taxpayers and insurance companies.

For years, the identity theft industry has been booming. While many people may associate it with stolen financial data, many other types of identity theft exist. It includes names and birth dates stolen and used for purposes other than financial transactions, including getting credit and insurance. People who have stolen personal data can also use that information to access your social media accounts. You can’t change your username, password, or email if someone has your personal information.

You may also read: How To Get The Best Type Of Small Business Loan For Startups

Real Meaning And Purpose Of Social Security Number

If Someone Steals Your Social Security Number, Then What Should You Do?

Do not worry. Even if your social security number is stolen, there are steps that you can take to ensure that you are not affected. If you are concerned, call the Social Security Administration and ask how to report your identity theft. You can also ask if your credit file will be affected. You can protect yourself from theft by following these five tips.

Use different passwords for every account. You should never use your social security number or birth date for a password. It would help if you also used a combination of letters and numbers. Use a combination of at least eight characters that are difficult to guess. You need to know what to do if you have been a victim of identity theft. You must understand that it is not just a problem limited to financial losses. Identity theft can cause problems with your reputation, credit, insurance, and more.

If someone uses your social security number to apply for loans or credit cards without your knowledge:

  1. You may need to cancel all the cards and file a report with the credit bureau. You should immediately contact the three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion). They will provide you with free credit reports and ID Theft Affidavits. These will be sent to the potential lender, creditor, and other agencies that may already be using your Social Security number.
  2. Report your Identity Theft urgently to the Federal Crime Commission.

Check your credit report and dispute any fraudulent accounts to ensure you’re protected.

Is It Possible For Someone To Access My Bank Account With My SSN?

Yes, it mostly depends on the bank’s policies! When a bank opens an account for someone, the only way that person can access the funds in the account is if they provide a Social Security number (SSN) to the bank, it is possible to access the account. This requirement stems from a federal law called the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA). This law requires financial institutions to verify a consumer’s identity when they request an electronic money transfer to the account. For example, the bank cannot send money from an account to a third party unless the consumer provides their Social Security number.

But I am sure that a bank person will ask you for complete information about your full name, date of birth, mother’s name, etc. If someone has this information, then this is an alarming situation for you. In terms of bank security, you should worry about other things like poor passwords, lack of two-factor authentication, and general carelessness when online banking.

What Methods Can Someone Use To Steal Your SSN?

Phishing: If a bank account holder gets a phone call or email from a company that says they need to verify their Social Security Number, they may make a mistake in giving access to their account. It is a standard method of hacking people’s accounts. Some people will answer the phone calls because they assume it is legitimate, while others will ignore the call because they are unsure. But if they let the caller into the account, the hacker may change the numbers in the computer so that they can control the account.

Data Leaks: In the case of any website or institution, data leaks that gather your personal information and SSN.

Stolen personal belongings: If someone steals your wallet, documents, files, or email information, it’s a big problem. 

Trash: Do not put your important documents into the trash especially take care of these things when you change your mobile or laptop. Because hackers can still excess your trashed documents. So Empty everything carefully before changing your devices.

How Can I Get Knowledge If Someone Is Using My SSN?

I will not suggest using any online platform to verify this kind of thing because everything online has the chance of exposure in case of illegal activity. Always use government institute websites or where it is essential to submit SSNs for any facility. Otherwise, the second method is to watch out for your bank statements and credit card bills and ensure not to use your SSN for an untrusted person or institute. Use two-factor authentification wherever possible.

Conclusion:

You should be aware of your Social Security Number, your Drivers License, Credit Card information, and your account information. It would be best if you always used a strong password. Never use your full name or any other personal data you may have on file.

This article discussed what someone could use your Social Security Number for. The first step in protecting yourself is ensuring your personal information is secure. For security, it’s essential to keep your personal information private, don’t share it, and consider these tips to protect yourself from a data breach.

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