Family finances: What happens if your Social Security number is stolen

by Shelton on September 20th, 2015

filed under Finances

A Social Security number is the Holy Grail of ID theft. Your SSN, along with other tidbits of personal information, such as your name, birth date and mailing address, allows an ID thief to open credit card and bank accounts and take out loans (or access your current ones), apply for government benefits, file a tax return, get medical care and get a job in your name.

Unlike a bank account or credit card number, a Social Security number is permanent; it’s not easy to get a new one. That means once it’s exposed, you’ll have to be on alert for life.