Personal Finance

Lost your social security card? Here’s what to do next

Losing important documents can be hassling, especially if it is something as important as your social security card. Although it is usually advised not to carry around your social security card in your wallet, a lot of people still do it, increasing the chances of losing the card in case their wallet is stolen or lost. However, you may not really need the card itself, but the number on it.

Again, although the card is easily replaceable, here are some important steps to take in the meantime:
– Review and monitor your credit report: If you have registered with any of the credit reporting agencies like Experian, TransUnion or Equifax, alert them about your card being lost and request a credit report as soon as possible so that any fraudulent activity is reported immediately. It is also a good idea to keep a close eye on your credit activities, especially after the card is gone in order to detect any red flags for any signs of fraudulent activity immediately, and take necessary steps accordingly.
– Anti-identity theft: Personal identity numbers and cards like credit cards or bank account details can be reissued with new numbers, except for your Social Security Number, which remains unique to each person. It is due to the uniqueness of the social security number that you might want to consider subscribing to an identity theft protection service immediately. An alert service of this sort can easily be placed via phone or email. This service is useful to keep an eye out for any illegitimate activity using your Social Security Number including creation of new accounts, change in address, name or any other personal information. It is especially very useful when you’re travelling, so that even on the go, you’re in the know about identity theft rather than finding out later.
– Informing all accounts: Inform all financial institutions you have an account with- banks, equities, etc. of the theft or loss of your Social Security Card so that they too ca take preventive measures to prevent anyone else from misusing your identity.
– Replacing your social security card: The last, but important step to take would be to contact social security administration and inform them that the card was stolen and request for a new one.
Once all the crucial steps are taken, routinely monitor all your financial reports for any unusual activities. Consider applying for a credit freeze till a new card is issued so that no lasting damage is done.

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