Social Security Administration Increases Security of SSN’s

The Social Security Administration (SSA) is changing the way they assign Social Security Numbers (SSN’s) for employees and resident aliens due to increase of identity theft.  As it stands the first 3 digits of SSN’s assigned identify the Area number, the middle two numbers identify the group and the last four digits are the serial number.  The area number prior to 1972 reflected the state of application and after 1972 they reflected the zip code of the applicants mailing address.

The change being made by SSA will be to remove the geographic significance of the area number and will make the number random.  Any software application performing edits on SSN’s based on the current method will cause problems, therefore the those edits should be removed. In addition, these changes will no longer raise the red flags we are accustomed to, for example if a SSN will not begin with a 7 or 8. 

The use of E-Verify is recommended and will confirm the new random generated SSN’s are valid.

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